Hundreds of residents have joined a campaign to save a landmark tree from being felled.
The large fir tree at the entrance to Rhyddings Park in Oswaldtwistle could be chopped down with around 150 other trees as part of a £2 million lottery makeover.
It was planted more than 40 years ago after being donated by Falkenberg - Oswaldtwistle’s twin town in Sweden.
Hyndburn council say any trees removed ‘will be replanted’ but campaigners have taken to social media in a bid to save the tree, with nearly 1,000 people signing an online petition.
The Observer reported in January how the park will receive £2 million to restore the Coach House and create a new community venue.
The scheme will also include returning the derelict walled garden to food growing use, establishing 600 training opportunities and new jobs to the area and creating a performance space.
Building works will begin next month and last for around 12 months.
Mark Cooper, who runs the ‘Oswaldtwistle from above’ Facebook page, said: “Everyone was pleased about the funding but they didn’t say 150 trees would be felled and one of those was the now famous fir tree. It’s got people’s backs up.
“There’s no need for it to be removed. They are going to create a seating area that looks down Rhyddings Street and it looks horrific.
“Nobody goes to a park to look down a road and watch cars go by. They go to enjoy the nature and wildlife, the trees and walk their dogs. There’s plenty of seating that could go round the base of a tree.”
Mr Cooper praised the ‘fantastic response’ to the campaign and hopes an agreement can be reached with the council so ‘both parties are happy’.
Samantha Haslope, who set up the online petition, said the tree is ‘perfectly healthy and a beautiful feature of the park’.
She said: “It holds many memories for Oswaldtwistle residents who have made it very clear that they would like to see it stay.”
Hyndburn council said the proposals are part of a bigger £2 million plan to refurbish the park.
A spokesperson said: “They have been developed in conjunction with the Friends of Rhyddings Park community group, who along with other agencies have worked tirelessly for the last two years to gain the funding that will not only completely refurbish the park, but also bring 600 training opportunities and new jobs to the area.
“Where any trees are removed they will be replanted.”