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Tree maintenance

The owner of the land that the trees grow on is responsible for the tree. If we do not own the land contact the legal owner. Or speak to your housing association if you are a housing association tenant.

Usually, we will only remove or cut back a tree if it is dangerous or causing any damage to property. Shade, leaves, blossom, pollen or seed distribution are not normally reasons to remove or cut back a tree.

If we own the tree, each case is looked at individually on the following timescales:

  • urgent matters, such as a dangerous tree will be dealt with within 24 hours
  • a decision on less urgent matters will be given within seven days.
Make a tree enquiry

Planting trees

You do not need to apply for planning permission to plant trees. Make sure that you are not planting trees too near buildings as growing trees could damage foundations or deprive your neighbours of light.

Cutting down and pruning trees

You should check if the tree is protected by a Tree Preservation Order (TPO) or if it is in a Conservation Area before carrying out any work. In certain circumstances you may require a felling licence from the Forestry Commission

If a tree is protected in any way, you will need to apply for our permission.

For trees which overhang your property or land you can cut it back to your boundary but you should inform the owner of the tree that you will be doing this and offer them the branches back. You also need to check if it is protected first.

Ash dieback

If you think a tree is suffering from Ash dieback you can get advice on what to look for and how to report an infected tree on the Forestry Commission website.

Selecting a tree surgeon

A tree surgeon, sometimes described as an arboriculturist, arborist or arboricultural contractor, will do tree work to a specification. The Arboricultural Association, which produces a list of approved contractors, can be contacted on 01242 522152.

Get at least three written quotes, including the cost. Tell the contractor when you would like the work to be done as quotes may only be valid for a certain time.

The contractor should provide proof of at least £2 million Public Liability Insurance. They should make sure any tree debris is disposed of properly.