An application to cut down six English yew trees in Wragby has been blocked by East Lindsey District Council.
The Rector of Wragby, Rev Mark Holden wanted to reduce the 10-metre tall trees outside All Saints’ Church, to just two metres.
Rev Holden said they had reached an unmanageable height, were overshadowing the church, which is Grade II listed, and blocking he view of its clock - and the parish council and the parochial church council agreed.
But ELDCC tree officer Robert Taylor has imposed a provisional tree preservation order - a move rubber-stamped at a meeting of the planning committee at Tedder Hall on December 10.
In his report, Mr Taylor stated: “These trees are healthy specimens in good overall condition. They are believed to date from around 1839, when the church was built. The proposed works would be excessive and unjustified, harmful to their health and also to the amenity they provide to the surrounding area.”
“The beneficiaries of reducing those of the trees that obscure the clock would predominantly be users of the bowling green - not the wider public.”
Coun Tom Ashton told the meeting he supported Mr Taylor’s initiative and said he doubted many people used the church clock to tell the time.
He said: “It would be a terrible shame to prune these yews so that they become little more than bushes.”
The committee noted that where individual branches are close to contacting the fabric of the building, the church is permitted to trim them to achieve clearance of 1.5 metres without requiring formal council consent.