Is the council responsible for trees in my garden? 

Waverley's housing team are responsible for trees on council land, including those in tenants’ gardens.  The council will attend or remove a tree if there is a problem with it; for example it is diseased. 

The council will also make trees safe.  This could mean pruning or lopping off the top if it is dangerously high, or felling the tree completely if it is diseased or the roots are causing major structural problems. We will not generally carry out tree work for aesthetic reasons, for instance if the tree is large and blocking out the light or because you think it is in the way or looks unsightly.

Can I prune a tree in my garden myself?

The Tenancy Agreement (clause 31) states that you must not cut down, prune, treat in any way or remove any trees, hedges, fences or walls without our written permission. This is because work to trees and hedges is often a specialist job and you could cause the tree to die or become diseased by doing the wrong thing to it. You are also responsible for reporting the condition of a tree to us if it is causing you concern. If you want to carry out any work to trees, large shrubs or hedges, you need to tell us in advance and in good time so that we can assess the likely effect.

Also, please remember that this includes doing anything that may damage the bark or roots of trees and hedges - bonfires, digging, or major garden work such as laying a patio or building a driveway. Such work may result in damage and decay, which, over time, may harm a tree and make it dangerous.

There is a tree on communal land outside my home - who should I report damage to?

If you come across any tree on communal land that may be dangerous or damaged, or whose roots are causing cracks in a footpath, you should report this to us as soon as possible. It may not be our responsibility - it could be the responsibility of another department or council.  However we will pass it on to the right people. Report a tree issue online.

If I do report a tree who comes to inspect it?

When the council has had a report of a dangerous tree we will arrange for a woodlands officer or tree officer to inspect it.  An assessment of the tree will be made and if work is needed we will arrange for the work to be carried out.  

If a tree is causing a problem that does not affect safety, then your Housing Management Officer, when time permits, will first assess how serious the situation is.

Report a tree issue online


Page owner: Harri Robinson. Last updated: 12/12/2017 12:03