Friends of the umbrella tree have sent a written request to Island Roads, the Isle of Wight Council and East Cowes Town Council, asking they be given the go-ahead to look after the weeping ash.

It follows a petition of almost 4,000 signatures against the removal of the tree, which was planted more than 100 years ago by Queen Victoria’s road manager.

Dame Judi Dench and wildlife campaigner, Chris Packham, also called for the tree to be saved.

The group has obtained public liability insurance of £5 million, and arranged for a highly qualified tree surgeon to carry out regular and frequent safety checks.

They have also put into place experienced engineers to construct a framework around the tree to support it, and all work and costs incurred will be paid for by the group.

The group stated: “We hope this will settle the controversy and animosity against the removal of this tree as the petitions now carry almost 4,000 signatures supporting its preservation.

“While we all understand the tree will ultimately die, we want it to be allowed to live out its remaining life with secure support and with absolutely no danger to the public.”