Kerry County Council says mature trees outside a Tralee church were cut back due to a risk of branches falling on pedestrians and cars.
The local authority says the decision was taken following a report on the trees close to the Dominican Church.
The works were carried out by qualified tree surgeons who, the council said ,have assured them the trees will grow back in 18 months.
The comments followed a question by Labour Cllr Terry O’Brien who asked who decides to what level the trees should be cut back or if they are butchered to death.
Cllr O’Brien said he’d been contacted by a number of people about the trees following the works.