The City Council in Cambridge, UK (where else would something like this happen?), is trying to ban students at the Under Fives Roundabout Pre-School from playing under a 30-year-old cedar tree becausethey might damage it.
The move follows a Cambridge City Council report into the health of the tree at the Under Fives Roundabout Pre-School in Cambridge.
It argues the tree – which covers half the playground – will suffer if the ground is “poached and compacted” by “constant activity” which could stop water reaching the roots.
The report recommends: “Ideally, the children would not be able to play beneath the tree.”
Poached ground is commonly caused by cattle cutting up grassland with their hooves near gates and feeding points, exposing the soil leaving it open to erosion.
I know kids can sometimes be as loud as a herd of cattle, but even with our current obesity epidemic I bet they’re still not as heavy.
The controversial council report also warns the tree might need to trimmed if children are allowed to play underneath.
It states: “In addition, cedar trees shed spiky needles and exude resin, which could result in complaints from parents and an application to trim the tree to reduce the nuisance.”
Critics of the plan argue that the thought of kids putting enough force on the ground around the tree to mess with its root system is ridiculous since children have played under trees since the invention of children and trees. Surprisingly the it’s a fucking tree, you can always plant more of them argument never came up, but I guess it kind of goes without saying when you’ve got any sense.