Negotiations to tame troublesome trees are reaping rewards, a Glenrothes councillor has said.
John Wincott told fellow town representatives that regular meetings with the Woodland Trust, Greenbelt and the local authority’s own parks staff were helping to tackle some residents’ concerns.
The three organisations are responsible for maintaining areas of woodland throughout the town, however councillors have spoken of a tidal wave of correspondence from angry residents complaining about a supposed lack of maintenance.
Councillor Wincott has liaised with the responsible bodies for over a year and said that after a slow start, the meetings were beginning to produce results.
“We have much more open lines of communication now,” he said.
“As the meetings have continued over the last year or so, we have had much more positive dialogue.”
The Woodland Trust purchased large parts of the town’s woodland estate when Glenrothes Development Corporation was wound up in 1995.
Parts of the estate are subcontracted to Greenbelt on a long lease, for which a 10-year management plan was approved by the Woodland Trust in 2012.
However, town councillors have raised concerns about the management of sites disponed to the charity, prompting an agreement in 2013 to host regular three-way meetings to eliminate further problems.
Many residents’ concerns centre on the growth of trees, with branches overhanging their homes and the subsequent restriction of light on their property.
Though there are no laws in Scotland regarding a so-called “right to light”, Councillor John Beare said it was important that such matters were addressed if it was impacting on residents’ quality of life.
However, Jim Leitch, Fife Council’s team manager for parks, said trees would only be trimmed if they presented a danger to people or property.
“There are no light laws in Scotland,” he said.
“If we start taking trees down then we’ll have people everywhere asking us to do the same.
“It’s a hard situation for us to deal with but if a tree is dangerous then we will take it down.”