hypocrisy grows on trees

Q: how do you honor a "heritage tree" in aurora?

A: screw it, or cut it down

There is something significantly wrong with the entire process of heritage designations and it doesn't stop at buildings.

Affectionately refereed to as the Blacksmith tree" once celebrated as being Aurora's first "heritage tree" had it's designation stripped only a couple years later and was swiftly cut down to size as evidenced in this picture:



How can a designation be issued and then so swiftly revoked?

The only "heritage tree" in Aurora recognized by the Province of Ontario is refereed to simply as "RHT 2010 135", as explained by the cheaply printed piece of polystyrene that is unceremoniously screwed into its trunk with some 5 cent Robertson screws:


If you bother to look up the tree via the URL provided ( http://www.treesontario.ca/programs/htrees.php)

The following photo and ridiculously small snippet of info awaits:



Nomination Status: Recognized

Red Oak

Approximate Age: 130 years

Height: 28 m

Circumference: 333 cm

Historical/Cultural Significance: Tree is in front of the Aurora Cultural Centre, also known as the Church Street School, opened in 1886.  The building was designated under the Ontario Heritage Act in 1981 and an Ontario Heritage Foundation plaque was erected at the site indicating this is one of the finest examples of a public school in the High Victorian manner.  The school was reportedly attended by Lester Pearson who later won the Nobel Peace Prize, became Prime Minister of Canada and oversaw the introduction of the Maple Leaf Flag.

Notice how in this description the tree is only mentioned once, and its historical significance is solely because of its proximity to the school.  The picture showcases the school not the tree.


I'm surprised it wasn't cut down to make room for the massive plaque that is in front of the school.

So which is it Aurora, we can't see the trees for the heritage? or we can't see the heritage for the trees?


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