Ash Dieback - Chalara Fraxinea

Milton Keynes Council (MKC) and The Parks Trust (TPT) are working to help prevent the spread of Ash Dieback disease.
Ash dieback is caused by a fungus called Chalara Fraxinea and at this time there are no confirmed cases of infection among mature ash trees in the Milton Keynes area.

The Parks Trust (TPT) and Milton Keynes Council (MKC) have sought advice and guidance from the Forestry Commission in formulating their strategy to prevent the spread of the disease. This means Milton Keynes Council and The Parks Trust will not be undertaking removal of all Ash in an area (sanitation felling) to prevent the spread of the disease.

Last year Ash dieback was found in a few tree saplings but was identified and removed in line with Statutory Plant Health Notices. The disease has the potential to cause a major impact to the environment and so TPT and MKC have agreed an action plan and are urging residents to look out for signs of the disease in the borough and in their own gardens.

This plan includes:

  • Landscape officers and those involved in landscaping operations on council and MKPT land will be made aware of the symptoms and instructed to remain vigilant to the presence of the disease.
  • Specific surveys will be undertaken to look for presence of the disease throughout the growing season in 2015 and future years.
  • Any cases of infection on MKC or TPT land (confirmed or suspected) will be investigated by a landscape officer and ultimately the Forestry Commission to confirm the infection and will be removed if necessary.
  • Contractors working on council or TPT land arriving from outside the borough will be asked to disinfect equipment and machinery to attempt to reduce any further spread of disease.
  • All Ash planting within Milton Keynes (and effectively the UK) has been suspended until further notice.
Homeowners are not required to take any particular action if you own infected ash trees, unless the plant health authority serves you with a statutory Plant Health Notice requiring specified actions.
Great care should be taken by all concerned to avoid unwittingly or otherwise moving potentially infected material from possible and confirmed infection sites to uninfected areas.

For further information about the disease and a better understanding of how to identify it we strongly recommend you visit the Forestry Commission website.

 

Last Updated: 20 December 2016