Before starting work on any tree, we strongly recommend that you check its status with us by emailing details, including the location and a description of the work you wish to carry out. the cutting down, topping, lopping or uprooting of a tree by, or on behalf of, the authority; the cutting down, topping, lopping or uprooting of a tree by or on behalf of the, cuts down, uproots or wilfully destroys a tree; or, tops, lops or wilfully damages a tree in a way that is likely to destroy it; or. The principal purpose of a Tree Preservation Orders (TPO) is to preserve trees which are normally located on privately owned land. Where the Order includes the area classification, although the position of every tree will not be shown, the authority is advised to specify replanting as near as is reasonably practical to the original tree’s position. Before it accepts an application the authority should check that the trees are in fact subject to an Order currently in force and verify that the application is both valid and complete. Authorities may also refer to existing registers, recording trees of particular merit, to assist in their selection of trees suitable for inclusion in an Order. Paragraph: 153 Reference ID: 36-153-20140306. It should assess the quality of additional information submitted with an application form during the determination of the application. Authorities should consider publicising successful prosecutions to help maximise their deterrent value. a copy of the Order (including the map); and. However, the authority can encourage good tree management, particularly when determining applications for consent under a Tree Preservation Order. Authorities should liaise with the Forestry Commission if they believe there has been a contravention of the felling licence provisions of the Forestry Act 1967. A section 211 notice should be acknowledged, although the authority should first consider whether the proposed work is exempt from the requirement to give this notice or requires a felling licence. Carrying out unauthorised work to a protected tree is an offence and can result in a fine of up to £20,000 or for a more serious offence, an unlimited fine. The authority should consider duly submitted objections when deciding whether the proposals are inappropriate and whether an Order should be made. The authority’s lawyers should be able to advise officers on how they should apply the codes in practice. When considering whether to prosecute, the authority should have regard to the Code for Crown Prosecutors and its own enforcement and prosecution policies. Legislation limits the authority’s liability by setting out circumstances in which a claim cannot be made and circumstances in which compensation is not payable. Where a tree presents an immediate risk of serious harm and work is urgently needed to remove that risk, tree owners or their agents must give written notice to the authority as soon as practicable after that work becomes necessary. The area category is intended for short-term protection in an emergency and may not be capable of providing appropriate long-term protection. ... to a fine of up to £20,000 or on conviction in the Crown Court to an unlimited fine. Only one copy of each application document needs to be submitted. A millionaire businessman who illegally chopped down 11 trees to make his back garden bigger has been taken to court. Paragraph: 046 Reference ID: 36-046-20140306. This is particularly important where repeated operations have been applied for. Application to carry out work to protected trees. The unauthorised lopping, wilful damage or felling of a tree is a serious criminal offence and can result in a fine of up to £20,000. This will be the case, for instance, in respect of anything done by, or on behalf of, the Forestry Commission on land it owns or manages or in which it has an interest. Even if the tree’s amenity value may merit an Order the authority can still decide that it would not be expedient to make one. Paragraph: 068 Reference ID: 36-068-20140306. Flowchart 1 shows the process for confirming an Order. Where a Tree Preservation Order may be justified, the officer should gather sufficient information to enable an accurate Order to be drawn up. It can also consider displaying site notices. The authority should make absolutely clear in its decision notice what is being authorised. Where an exception applies the authority’s consent to carry out works is not needed, but notice of those works may need to be given to the authority. Tree Preservation Order (TPO) A Tree Preservation Order (TPO) is an order made by us, giving legal protection to trees or woodland. Any necessary minor clarification should be confirmed in writing by the applicant either in a separate letter or by modifying the original application. The removal of countryside hedgerows is regulated under different legislation. Trees are protected if they are either the subject of a Tree Preservation Order (TPO) or if they are in a Conservation Area. Paragraph: 095 Reference ID: 36-095-20140306. the amenity value of the tree or trees in question, how that amenity value would be affected by the proposed work, granting a consent subject to conditions; or, refusing any consent, agreement or approval required under a condition, within 12 months of the date of the authority’s decision; or. Tree Preservation Code of Practice Page 5 of 25 Eurobodalla Shire Council’s Tree Risk Management Policy on Council Controlled Land – provides the guidelines for Council staff to assess the potential risks from trees on Council controlled land to public safety and private assets. Bournemouth Crown Court was told that Trevor Beale had destroyed the canopies of a Scots pine tree in a neighbouring garden and one in his own in order to increase the natural light on his property’s rear patio. It is an offence to carry out work to trees that are covered by a Tree Preservation Orders (TPO) or to trees which are within a conservation area, without telling us.. Our Trees and development - our preferred approach page has useful information for anyone considering a new development near to trees. If your tree is protected then … If you’d like an email alert when changes are made to planning guidance please subscribe. The duty transfers to the new owner if the land changes hands. Protected trees can be of any size or species. Eric Gadsden (on behalf of W E Black Limited and individually) pleaded guilty at St Albans Magistrates' Court on Wednesday 19 August and received a fine of £1,500 and ordered to pay costs of £2,500 as well as the victim charge of £100. Paragraph: 061 Reference ID: 36-061-20140306. The authority must keep a register of all applications for consent under an Order. Consequently: Paragraph: 004 Reference ID: 36-004-20140306. But, where an alleged action falls short of the definition in section 210 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990, section 1(1) of the Criminal Attempts Act 1981 may provide an alternative route in some cases where unauthorised work has been attempted. Sufficient information in a section 211 notice will help the local authority to verify that the proposed work, if undertaken, has not been exceeded and support enforcement action if appropriate. The authority should consider varying the Order or making a new one to protect any replacement trees planted in a location not identified in the original Order. Paragraph: 051 Reference ID: 36-051-20140306. The woodland category should not hinder beneficial woodland management. Paragraph: 037 Reference ID: 36-037-20140306. Paragraph: 059 Reference ID: 36-059-20140306. The Order’s effect will stop on the date of its decision, which must be recorded on the Order. Dacorum Borough Council has successfully prosecuted a housing developer for breaching a tree preservation order. trees which are not to be included in the Order. Applications for consent 31. development under a planning permission has not been commenced within the relevant time limit (ie the permission has ‘expired’); only outline planning permission has been granted; and. This process applies to contraventions of Tree Preservation Orders. Section 210(4) of the Act sets out that it is also an offence for anyone to contravene the provisions of an Order other than those mentioned above. Registers of significant trees and “tree preservation orders” can be identified by local councils through their local planning schemes, which are enabled through Part 5 of the Planning and Development Act 2005 (although the Act does not specifically refer to significant trees). Paragraph: 137 Reference ID: 36-137-20140306. There is, however, a right of appeal to the Secretary of State following an application to carry out work on trees protected by an Order that is refused, granted subject to conditions, or not determined. In general terms, it follows that the higher the amenity value of the tree or woodland and the greater any negative impact of proposed works on amenity, the stronger the reasons needed before consent is granted. contribution to the character or appearance of a conservation area. ‘Amenity’ is not defined in law, so authorities need to exercise judgment when deciding whether it is within their powers to make an Order. But authorities should bear in mind that successful prosecutions for contravening Orders will be difficult where Orders do not show clearly which trees are meant to be protected. Homeowner fined £1000 for 'severely pruning' a protected 100-year-old tree in his own front garden because it was blocking his view. Sections 214B, 214C and 214D of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 set out provisions relating to rights of entry in respect of protected trees. Authorities are advised to enter ‘None’ against any categories not used in the Order. be accompanied by a plan which clearly identifies the tree or trees on which work is proposed; be accompanied by such information as is necessary to clearly specify the work for which consent is sought; state the reasons for making the application; and. For example, an authority may wish to replace an Order containing an area classification with new Orders protecting individual trees or groups of trees. on land in which the county council holds an interest. Also, in some cases, accidental destruction of a protected tree is not an offence. The authority must be clear about what work it will allow and any associated conditions. Paragraph: 017 Reference ID: 36-017-20140306. See guidance on tree size in conservation areas. it shall not be required to pay compensation other than to the owner of the land, it shall not be required to pay compensation if more than 12 months have elapsed since the date of the authority’s decision, or, in the case of an appeal to the Secretary of State, the final determination of that appeal. Where an authority decides to revoke an Order it must then follow the procedures set out in the Town and Country Planning (Tree Preservation) (England) Regulations 2012. If the necessary requirements are met, the authority should validate the application. In such cases the authority should make the scope, timing and limit of the work clear. Early discussion will give the authority a chance to: Where there has been no pre-application discussion the applicant may, after discussion with the authority, still modify the application in writing or withdraw it and submit a new one. Objections to a new Tree Preservation Order can be made on any grounds. But the authority and landowner may agree on planting, for example, one tree of a different species or two trees of a smaller species to replace one of a large species. The officer should record the number and species (or at least the genus) of the individual trees or groups of trees to be included in the Order and their location. The authority’s consent is not required for carrying out work on trees protected by an Order if that work is urgently necessary for national security purposes. Paragraph: 084 Reference ID: 36-084-20140306. Failure to comply with a tree replacement notice is not an offence. In either case it should promptly inform the person who gave the notice. If the authority decides an application is invalid the applicant may have the right of appeal. Any request for the authority to use this power should be made in writing. They should be notified of the: If the authority has confirmed the Order with modifications, then it should serve a copy of the Order as confirmed. The local planning authority should consider including in the notice: Paragraph: 160 Reference ID: 36-160-20140306. Unlike a replacement tree planted under a condition, a replacement tree planted because of the duty under section 206 is automatically protected by the original Order. Following consideration of any objections and comments the authorities can decide whether or not to confirm the Order. Apply for works to a protected tree or a tree in a conservation area. The authority may enforce replanting by serving a tree replacement notice on the landowner. To conserve biodiversity it can be good practice to retain dead wood on living trees and at least the lower trunk of dead ‘ancient’ or ‘veteran’ trees unless, for example, safety reasons justify removal.   Work should only be carried out to the extent that it is necessary to remove the risk. Tree Preservation Orders: A guide to the Law and Good Practice. Damaging or working on a protected tree is a serious criminal offence. It is expected that all vegetation control is carried out in accordance with best arboricultural practice. An Order prohibits the: of trees without the local planning authority’s written consent. If this deadline is missed and an authority still considers protection necessary it will have to make a new Order. Paragraph: 104 Reference ID: 36-104-20140306. 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