RESIDENTS in Convoy have today praised the actions of Donegal County Council staff after a man threatened to chop down 200-year-old trees in the area.
Council officials moved in this morning to a site near the Green Fields development.
This followed a number of incidents in recent days where several men have said they plan to set up a camp there.
The varied trees in the area – some 200 year old oaks – were threatened with destruction.
Sinn Fein councillor Cora Harvey today asked council officials to rush through Tree Preservation Orders to prevent the plants from being chopped down.
“Basically a number of men have arrived in the field with caravans in recent days,” said one local mother.
“They left again, but one of them said he’d be back on Saturday and that they were planning to set up a camp there.
“I believe in letting people live and let live but this man said they were bringing a chainsaw and they were going to cut down the trees in and around the field.
“This is ancient woodland. Many trees are more than 200-years-old and it would be a disgrace if this were to happen.”
Sinn Fein councillor Jack Murray said he had also received calls about the trees.
“Councillor Harvey took immediate action to make sure the trees are protected,” he said.
Council officials arrived at the field at 11am and began placing bollards at its entrance to prevent any illegal encampment from taking place.
“They moved very quickly and we are grateful to the local councillor and to the council staff for their swift response,” said another local man.
Cllr Patrick McGowan said later that he had also been in touch with the council in order to secure the site.