SIR – On Saturday, March 23, we witnessed the destruction of a 200-year-old oak tree in Pershore Abbey grounds.

The tree surgeons tried to justify their decision to cull the tree by telling us it was soft inside. I worked in the forestry industry for several years so I inspected their “soft” interior; approximately 10 per cent of the internal wood was soft and may have caused a hole to be created by a woodpecker through the branch joint which had been sawn off previously.

The reason for the destruction was for “the safety of the public”. Certainly in 300 years’ time this tree may have dropped a limb on to a few of the 900 billion people who will infest the plant at that time.

Unfortunately, all councils are now being instructed to put public “health and safety” at the top of their priority, although you would not think so if you have visited the toilets near Pershore Abbey.

The tree in Pershore would have provided oxygen for the planet for another 300 years but, instead it provided over five tonnes of logs for sale, plus a bill to us the tax payer of £5,000 for destroying it, as admitted in the local council pamphlet explaining why our council tax has increased by more than five per cent.

Richard Bird