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Deer flee tree felling operation
THE felling of hundreds of mature Scots Pine trees may have forced a herd of deer to flee in their search for a new home.
It is a claim made by one startled driver, who was forced to slam on his brakes when a huge deer sprang across the road in front of him.
United Utilities said they cut down the trees along Burrows Lane in Eccleston as their roots threatened the structure of Prescot Reservoir.
A spokesman admitted they could have handled the situation better regards consultation with the public, but were legally bound to act.
Members of St Helens Green Party immediately raised their concerns, predicting a drastic impact on wildlife.
Motorist Peter Hornby, 60, described what happened to him as he made his way home.
He said: “I was coming back from work when all of a sudden this thing ran straight in front of me.
“I’ve not seen a wild deer for ages, but the next day, another one ran out. I got in touch with Knowsley Council and told them, if I had a dog that came off its lead it would be my fault.
“I spoke to Knowsley Safari Park a couple of days later and they said they weren’t theirs. I have since heard that they have lived beside the reservoir and after the trees have been cut down the deer have been forced to move.
“It destroyed their habitat and now they are wandering around the Prescot area. People at least have to know they are there.”
Knowsley Council said: “Our environmental health team received a call from a man to report a sighting of deer in Prescot.
“The team followed this up with a number of partners including the Highways Agency and Merseyside Police. It was established that the animals are wild deer and therefore no organisation has a responsibility for their ownership.
“We are assuming that the deer were located around a local reservoir and may have been disturbed by recent work carried out by United Utilities to cut back trees around the reservoir.”