A Tree Preservation Order (TPO) is put in place to preserve single or groups of trees which are of acknowledged amenity value.
You can't undertake work to a protected tree unless you've applied for Tree Works Consent and we've approved it. This applies to the following work:
- Cutting down
- Topping - removing all the top branches of a tree
- Lopping/Pruning - removing branches
- Uprooting – completely removing the tree & its roots
- Cutting the roots
Government guidance on Tree Preservation Orders
Large development sites
Trees on large development sites must be properly protected during construction.
Details of tree protection or Conservation Areas on your property should be written in your deeds. If you can’t find anything, try searching our map.
Check if your tree is protected
If trees don't have a TPO, or aren't in a Conservation Area, work can be done without Tree Works Consent.
We don't provide written information regarding trees that are not protected by a TPO.
If you suspect work is being done without Tree Works Consent, contact us.
Trees in a Conservation Area
Conservation Areas are areas of natural beauty or of special architectural or historic interest.
Works in Conservation Areas are controlled or restricted to project or improve the character or appearance of the area.
Trees in Conservation Areas are protected as part of preserving the amenity value of the area, so even if the tree(s) isn't protected by a TPO, you still need to apply for consent for works to it.
Conservation Areas can be put in place for a number of reasons. They can be for protecting the natural beauty of the area or for preserving special architectural work and places of historic interest. Conservation Areas can be spread over wide areas. For example, a whole village could be within a Conservation Area.
A tree can also be protected by a TPO and be within a Conservation Area.
Notice for work to trees in a Conservation Area
You must give us 6 weeks notice before doing any work to trees in Conservation Areas.
We will consider the proposed work and whether the tree should be protected by a preservation order. We have up to 6 weeks to agree the work or decide to make a preservation order on the tree(s) affected by the notice.
Details of approved applications for works to trees with TPOs or agreed Conservation Areas:
Advice on the condition of trees
You'll need to assess yourself before deciding if works need to be carried out.
It's recommended you speak to a professional like a tree surgeon or arboricultural consultant.
We can advise you based on the following fees:
- 1st hour - £125.00 (+ VAT)
- Subsequent charge per hour - £75.00 (+ VAT)
Add a TPO to a tree
TPOs can only be used to protect selected trees and woodlands if their removal would have a significant impact on the local environment and its enjoyment by the public.
If you think your tree qualifies, you can apply to have a tree considered for protection.
You will need the following information:
- your name and address and a contact telephone number
- address of the land on which the trees stand, if different from your address
- reason for us to consider protecting the trees with a Tree Preservation Order - give number of trees and species, if known
- photos or a sketch of the location of the trees and surrounding properties or landmarks
- whether the tree is under threat
Request a new TPO
Carrying out work on protected trees
To carry out works to protected trees, or trees within a Conservation area, you'll need to apply for specific planning permission called "Tree Works Consent".
Once we have received your application and validated it, it can take up to 8 weeks for a decision to be made.
When consent has been granted, you will need to arrange and pay for the works. You will also have to follow any conditions imposed.
If you need to go onto someone else's property to do the work, you must obtain permission from the land owner.
Permission to undertake work to a tree protected by a preservation order or in a conservation area doesn't mean we give you permission to enter someone else's property to do the work. The owner of the tree must agree to this.
Work that does not need consent
You do not need consent from us to carry out works to trees which can be proven to be dead, or have become immediately dangerous.
However, if you propose to remove a tree under these exemptions we recommend you give us at least 5 days' notice, except in an emergency.
If you're not sure if the tree will fall, you should obtain the advice of an Arboriculturalist or Tree surgeon.
Visit the Planning Portal to learn more.
What supporting documents do you need?
Depending on the type of application you intend to submit, there may be additional documents that are required.
Check supporting documents
There is no charge to apply for Tree Works Consent.
Apply for Tree Works Consent
You can obtain a copy of the application form by contacting us but we will charge a reasonable fee for printing and posting.