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The day barriers came down

19th May tree story

This was the day that we stepped up the tree protection. We had to. Around midday we began to be increasingly anxious- for some unknown reason - about the tree. Something was in the air. One of us went to the tree to check. To discover a van full of police and Berkeley employees attempting to erect new hoardings to hide the tree behind barriers.

We scrambled to get people to the tree. ‘To the tree’. And we did. The community came out and stood behind the barriers around the tree. The police went. The barriers went back into storage. The tree is ours again - for now.

As a result, we decided that we need to be by the tree as much as we can. A tree surgeon attached ropes and people climbed up into the tree. And stayed in it. Most for the first time. Without exception people reported loving the experience of being higher up, and inside the tree listening to it and being held by it.

People have rallied to the tree on this day. 4 people slept beside it overnight on the pavement. (Slept…a bit) I did. A first. This was a day full of first experiences. Of protest and of action to protect the tree. It is one tree. Our tree. This was quite a day.

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