Thousands of trees at a Chorley countryside site are due to be felled to prevent the spread of disease.
Work is due to start in February to remove around 2,500 larch trees covering 3.5 hectares at Healey Nab, which are affected by Phytophthora ramorum, an algae-like organism which causes Sudden Larch Death.
Lancashire County Council which owns the site has been issued with a Statutory Plant Health Notice by the Forestry Commission requiring the trees to be cleared.
This action is part of a national approach to managing the disease, and aims to stop the spores of the algae spreading and infecting other woodlands.
County Councillor Albert Atkinson, cabinet member for technical services, rural affairs and waste management, said, “This is sad news as the removal of these trees will have a dramatic impact on the landscape of Healey Nab.
“However we have no choice but to comply with this legal notice, and accept that the overriding priority must be to prevent the spread of disease.
“While I share people’s sorrow at the need to fell these trees, there will be some longer term benefits as the mixed native broadleaf species, along with undergrowth such as heather and bilberry, which will quickly begin to grow over the summer, will provide a better habitat for wildlife.”