Do I Need Permission To Work On My Tree?

How Do I Found Out If I Need Permission To Work On My Tree?

Most councils now have interactive online maps available for anyone to search a property address. You can see see if it falls within a Conservation Area or if there are any Tree Preservation Orders. As well as any other planning constraints registered at the property.

If this information is not available, you can email the Planning Department. They usually respond within ten days confirming if permission is needed.

We perform this check as routine for each and every site we work on.

Conservation Areas:
  • Protect the character and amenity values of important areas
  • Any tree with a diameter of over 7.5cm taken at chest height requires a formal planning notification. Likewise even if you planted the tree yourself
  •  Takes up to six weeks
  • Either “No Objection” and the proposed works may proceed
  • Or the council “Object” to the proposed works and a Tree Preservation Order (TPO) will be made.
  • Once the six week period has lapsed, and no TPO has been made by that time, the proposed works may take place
Tree Preservation Orders:
  •  Powerful legislation to protect certain trees from any unauthorised works
  • Any tree with an individual or group TPO requires a formal planning application
  • Takes up to 8 weeks
  • Before any works take place a decision must be given, one cannot just carry out the works after the 8 week time period has lapsed
  • Proposed works can sometimes be “Granted With Condition” allowing for a lesser specification
  • If proposed works are refused, a planning appeal is available

Applications can be submitted via the Planning Portal online and free of charge by anyone once you have registered and set up an account.

Though most good tree companies will do this for you, usually free of charge as part of their service.

Why Do I Need it?

First of all it is a legal requirement if your tree is protected.

Penalties as a result therfore include fines of up to £20 000 per offence.

If serious enough, you can end up in the Crown Court as a result consequently facing an unlimited fine and a possible criminal conviction.

What If My Tree is dead or Dangerous?

Do I need permission to work on my tree,  or to cut it down if it is dead or dangerous?

Under the new regulations, trees that are dead or dangerous can be removed with a five day notification to your local planning authority. A few recent and clear photographs will also help.

Trees that are so unsafe that an imminent and serious risk of damage  is highly probable, can be removed as soon as practicable. The local Planning Department needs to be notified once this has been done, also take several photographs for your records and as evidence.

If you are in any way concerned about one of your trees, especially if you think it’s not in a good way. Call a professional arborist out straight away for peace of mind.

How Can We Help?

We carry out site visits free of charge, where we can give you accurate and expert advice.

Contact us today for more information and to arrange a site visit.