LIKE Alexandra Bailey (HAS, Oct 12), I also had misgivings when I saw the saplings being manoeuvred into place in the Market Square in Darlington.

It is unfortunate that whoever is responsible for the decision to encase them in metal boxes has not kept up with current understanding of the symbiotic and beneficial connection that it has been proven exists between trees through their roots.

Tests have shown that a weakened tree can be helped by healthy ones surrounding it. No such hope for this lot.

Being of a sourer disposition than Ms Bailey, my first thought was the likelihood of the little trees lasting in one piece once the drunken patrons of certain hostelries surrounding the square decide to test their strength against them.

Jo Jones, Darlington