Conservation Area Trees

Environment

All trees that have a stem diameter greater than 75mm that are located in Conservation Areas are protected. A Conservation Area is an area designated by the Council for its architectural or historical interest. The protection requires that no works (including pruning) may be carried out to such a tree unless six weeks’ notice has first been served on the Council.

During this period the Council may grant consent for the works or make a Tree Preservation Order (TPO) to protect the tree. If the Council has not taken any action at the expiry of the six-week period the works may be undertaken as notified. The Council is not entitled to attach any conditions to consent.

Character statements describe the history, architecture and townscape interest of Conservation Areas. Trees can sometimes be an integral part of their character and some Conservation Areas have distinctive tree cover.

FAQ's

Q. Do I need permission to cut, lop or top trees in a Conservation Area?

A. Yes. Please fill in the application form and return it to us or submit your application electronically through the Planning Portal.

Q. How long will it take before I find out whether I can do the proposed works to my tree?

A. Under section 211 of the Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas Act 1990, anyone proposing to cut down or carry out works to a tree in a conservation area is required to give the local authority six week’s notice to assess the application. If the local authority has not responded after the six-week period then you may go ahead with the proposed works.

Q. Is this service free?

A. Yes, there is no charge when submitting the application form to the Council and the Council will give free advice to anyone who has a general tree inquiry.

Q. Do Tree Preservation Orders occur within Conservation Areas?

A. Yes, Tree Preservation Orders can exist within Conservation Areas.

Q. What happens if I do works to a tree within a Conservation Area without permission?

A. Anyone who cuts down, uproots, tops, lops or wilfully damages a tree in a Conservation Area may have committed an offence. The penalties are the same for those contravening a Tree Preservation Order. The maximum fine in a magistrate’s court is £20,000 for destroying a tree and £2,500 for works carried out without consent.

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