A "lack of foresight" in planting trees in the centre of a market town is being blamed for a decision to fell them more than 30 years on

More than 30 trees were planted in the centre of Machynlleth in the 1980s, but according to Powys council “lack of foresight and the unfavourable urban conditions” has led to many of the trees being unstable or poorly grown with dead branches, roots lifting pavements and threatening nearby buildings.

The trees are along Heol Maengwyn – the A489 – Penrallt St and Pentrehedyn St, the A487. Safety inspections have already seen some of the worst removed with further inspections identifying another seven which need to be felled this winter.

North and Mid Wales Trunk Road Agency and the Welsh Government have proposed that once the trees are removed, that there should be a new replanting scheme to “enhance Machynlleth town centre”.

The initial plans being put forward are designed to improve planting conditions for replacement trees as well as potentially increasing the number of street trees from the original 30 to 42.

Cllr Jackie Charlton, cabinet member for a greener Powys said felling the trees will be good for the town in the long term.

She said: “Losing trees can be emotive and although at first this appears to be sad news, it provides an ideal opportunity to improve the conditions of the remaining trees and a chance replant the felled trees in a more appropriate way – ensuring we choose the right locations, tree species and method of planting to guarantee their survival and presence within Machynlleth for years to come.

“We are aware of the many benefits or urban planting. Trees not only improve our environments by looking beautiful, but they can also play a vital role in combatting the climate and nature emergencies we are currently facing by providing a haven for wildlife, offering shade, absorbing excess water, and improving air quality.

“Having been planted within the town’s conservation area, there is a legal obligation to replace the trees which have already been, or are planned to be, removed. But we want to make sure this is done correctly so future generations can reap the benefits and enjoy the trees for many years to come.”

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People are invited to share their thoughts on the proposals to replace the old trees and plant an additional 12 trees within Machynlleth town centre until September 16. The proposals can be viewed online or in person at Y Plas Machynlleth, the Machynlleth Library, Caffi Alys and the Bowling Club.

There will also be a drop-in session at the Bowling Club on Monday, September 5 between 3pm and 7:30pm, with a presentation at 6pm.