Trees in Conservation Areas

Conservation Areas are special areas designated to conserve the districts valuable heritage assets. As well as protecting buildings and other built structures they also protect trees. However Conservation Areas only protect trees with a stem diameter that measures than 75mm (measured 1.5m from the ground) or greater. If you wish to work of trees of this size or over then you will need to submit a formal notice of intent to the council. The penalties for unauthorised felling or lopping of trees in Conservation Areas are the same as for trees protected by TPO.

If there are trees protected with a Tree Preservation Order (TPO) also in the Conservation Area then the TPO rules apply.

How can I find out if my tree is within a Conservation Area?

You can view a list of Conservation Areas.

You can also ring the Planning Department on 01274 434605 to find out if a tree is protected.

Alternatively TPOs can be viewed at Britannia House Customer Service Centre during normal office hours. If you are intending to view any TPO file we would ask that that you ring us first at least 24 hours beforehand on 01274 434605 so that an officer can prepare the files that you need.

My tree is within a Conservation Area. How can I apply for work and how long will the process take?

Application forms for work to trees can be found in the Make a Planning Application section.

You should carefully read the forms as it is important that the council receives the appropriate and correct information. If the correct information is not provided then there is a likelihood that the notice will be returned. We would usually recommend that a professional arboriculturalist submits the notice on your behalf by properly defining the trees and the work required.

The Local Planning Authority's role in assessing notices of intent is to determine whether or not the tree/s are suitable for protection via a Tree Preservation Order. We aim to formally respond to notices of intent within 6 weeks and 88% of the time we achieve this. However if you have not heard from us within 6 weeks of the validation date of your notice you may undertake the work applied for (although a Tree Preservation Order can still be made after this time period).

If you have not heard from us within the six weeks period please contact the Trees Team to find out whether or not a Tree Preservation Order has been made because if a TPO has been made you will have to submit a TPO application.

Please do not ring before the 6 week period comes to an end. Up to 30% of our time can be spent dealing with enquiries about the stage of an application and this actually delays us dealing with your application. Help us to help you.

What do I do if I think someone has or is working on a protected tree?

Contact the Trees Team by email or on 01274 434605 immediately and we can check to see if the work is authorised. If the work is not authorised we will investigate and take appropriate action. All queries regarding potentially unauthorised works will be dealt with in the strictest confidence.