Mike Duffy on new trees for Lightwater’s village square

Mike Duffy in the Lightwater village square

Mike Duffy in the Lightwater village square

A huge furore resulted from the removal of trees in Lightwater’s village square. I’ve talked to Mike Duffy of Duffy’s Budgens, owners of the square, about why the trees have been removed and the plans for their replacement.

Here’s a piece of Lightwater history. The trees, including the holly trees, were at the end of the garden of the house next door to the bicycle shop, both of which were demolished prior to the building of the square as it now appears. They were retained and became part of Lightwater village centre’s street scene.

Much as I love trees, which I do, to me the trees were neither of pleasing shape, or variety. Check out The Street Tree, for some unusual trees. I like our native fastigiate Hornbeams. But Mike is looking for evergreen trees. I suggest the Strawberry Tree – Arbutus Unedo, a couple of which would be spectacular. They are relatively small, can be pruned, are slow growers with interesting bark, flowers and fruit.

Here’s my interview with Mike Duffy, and a before and after view of the trees in the village square [click to enlarge].

This kerfuffle about trees has prompted me to look for pleasing and interesting trees in our borough.

Lightwater village square before changes to the treescape

Lightwater village square before changes to the tree scape

After the changes to the treescape in Lightwater village square

After the changes to the tree scape in Lightwater village square

10 thoughts on “Mike Duffy on new trees for Lightwater’s village square

  1. who gave budgens the advice to remove the trees ?, from what I have seen they were not rotten as said , I am sure the county council will be interested in the situation.


  2. As usual another piece of Lightwater history gone forever without any local consultation. The square is also so full of advertising boards it looks horrendous, it’s almost a hazard to walk across the square with Budgens paraphernalia everywhere and it detracts from the village scene, looks more like a closing down sale. Is there no limit to how many can be displayed?? I’m surprised the trees are not being replaced with Budgens flag poles it’s advertising gone crazy!


  3. An easy option to improve things all round – yes replace the trees 6 feet further back – AFTER building a layby for 10-minute shoppers a la Eric Pickles initiative……

    oh, wait – money ….. planning permission …. bureacracy …..


  4. Like Junction 3a for the M3 @ The Maultway (limited access, eastbound entry, westbound exit) – done during the Managed Motorway works from 2014

    Sigh – when I rule the world !


  5. I believe the only reason the Trees were removed from The Square in Lightwater was to give more exposure to Budgens prior to the arrival of Tesco. Hurry up Tesco – bring trees – oust arrogant Duffey. Who is the mystery ‘person’ or ‘authority’ who told him to remove the trees. Questions need answering here.


  6. Such a shame, making the village square looking bare and cheap, a commercial shopping centre, not a village square. Is it because Tesco are coming and Budgens want more visability of their shop front from the road????? THINK SO. And now the return of the Hideous banner frame, strapped on to the ornate roadside pillars!!! SOOO scruffy and thoughtless to the villagers!!


  7. I thought I was alone on this and the over the top scruffy advertising…..evidently not from what I hear from villagers!


  8. IF the desire was truely there – from ALL ‘interested’ parties, this could so easily be sorted quickly – at the same time as improving parking by widening the road to provide a layby.

    This would also improve safety for those pulling out of Budgens car park entrance – often the road is obscured by illegally parked vehicles on the ex-tree-lined frontage.

    So come on Lightwater Business, Lightwater Parish & SHBC – make an effort!


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