Tree felling in High Court

A woman who was fined £500 and ordered to pay £2,500 in legal costs after felling a tree in her garden has been given the green light to challenge her conviction in the High Court. A hearing is expected before the summer vacation. The fine and legal costs order were imposed on 76-year-old Josephine O'Hare by magistrates at Cambridge on 26 January last year, after they convicted her of contravening a tree preservation order. Lord Justice Rose and Mr Justice Alliott, who granted leave for O'Hare to seek judicial review, were told by her counsel Gregory Jones that the case raised issues of general public importance. The prosecution claimed that the tree should never have been cut down, but O'Hare claimed that the tree was dying and that in those circumstances it was not felled in contravention of a tree preservation order.