Unless one of the exemptions applies, all trees subject of a TPO require formal consent for tree works.
Apply for works to a protected tree
Whilst we recognise the need to conserve tree cover, there will be occasions where tree removal is justified. Normally, the felling of a tree or trees that are protected by a TPO will only be considered if one or more of the following apply:
- The protected tree does not meet the criteria set out in making New Tree Preservation Orders
- The tree is causing damage to a building and where tree removal rather than other tree works such as pruning is considered to be the most appropriate remedy
- The removal of the tree would be in the interests of good silvicultural and arboricultural management and would benefit the long term development of adjacent better quality trees.
We will not normally support the removal of trees that do not fulfil the above criteria, for example, where the trees are perceived to be a problem due to leaf or fruit fall or bird droppings.
However, in certain circumstances, removal of a tree or trees may be justified where the tree owner’s or the neighbour’s right to the reasonable enjoyment of their property is significantly affected. In such cases, it will be necessary to weigh the amenity value of the tree or trees against the impact on the amenities of the tree owner or the neighbour. In such cases, the following criteria will be used:
- The public amenity value or landscape importance of the tree or trees, along with any strong cultural, historical, biodiversity or rarity value
- The tree species, density of canopy, condition and age
- The aspect of the property and garden in relation to the tree or trees.
In assessing applications, we will balance the safety of residents and property with the amenity value of the tree. Where there is a requirement or duty to plant a replacement tree, it should be of a suitable size and species to avoid causing any future problems.
From time to time it is necessary to prune trees to help to retain them in a safe and healthy condition. Permission for pruning will normally be allowed where the work is in the interests of the tree’s future, accords with the latest version of British Standard 3998 ‘Recommendations for Tree Work’ and the work:
- is required to prevent direct or indirect physical damage to a building; or
- would not adversely affect the public amenity value of the tree; or
- is necessary to improve the growth of adjacent better quality trees.
As with the case of tree removal, we will not normally allow the pruning of trees that are perceived to be a problem because of leaf fall, fruit fall or bird droppings.
However, we acknowledge that that there may be occasions where the relationship of a tree to a property causes excessive problems that significantly affect the reasonable enjoyment of the tree owner’s or the neighbour’s property, and where this situation would be improved as a result of pruning. When considering such cases, the council will weigh the amenity value of the tree or trees against the impact on the owner or neighbour’s amenity, as set out in the section above regarding tree removal.