In November a Christmas tree was erected for the Shawlands community, but after seeing the high metal fence around the infamous tree locals started a campaign to #FreetheTree.
The campaign sprung from an unsuccessful effort by Shawlands and Strathbungo Community Council to have a lower fence replace the Heras that “caged” the lonely looking tree.
The jailed tree created a great deal of media attention and even spawned its own twitter account after Glasgow City Council agreed to lower the fence, then had a change of heart after the contractor who installed the lights was concerned for the safety of the public coming into contact with mains electricity.
Full statement from Glasgow City Council regarding the tree:
“We welcome the huge interest that the community has shown in the Shawlands tree this year in its new location and have taken on board all the comments that have been made about the suitability of the fence that surrounds it. We have used this type of fence around most of the city’s Christmas trees for several years and never received so many comments about any of them.
“Unfortunately our budget will not stretch to providing traditional picket fences around the trees that we provide.
“However, other local communities in the city do finance and provide such fences (and baubles) themselves through fund raising activities and we do appreciate some direct community involvement with the Christmas trees.
“Given all the comments on the Shawlands tree this year we do intend to explore options for next year that will at least allow us to use lower crowd control barriers instead of the Heras fencing at high profile locations without compromising the safety concerns we currently have with people being able to access electrical equipment if they breech the fence.
“We will engage directly with the Community Council in the development of the fencing proposals for next year.”