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How Can I Find Out If Any Trees on My Land Are Protected?

How You Should Proceed

Whatever the plans for your outside space, it’s vital to determine if any trees on your land are protected by law. Here’s everything you need to know about what kinds of protection a tree can be under, and how, as the tree surgeon Colchester property owners recommend, we are here to help you.

What are Tree Preservation Orders?

A TPO is made and managed by your local authority, and is put in place to protect an individual tree, groups of trees or woods that are of particular value to your local communities. A TPO being in place means that you cannot fell or cause any damage to a tree – this includes pruning – without written consent from your local authority. However, if the tree is part of an approved planning application, the TPO no longer stands.

What is a Conservation Area?

A Conservation Area is an area of special architectural or historic interest, and any trees that fall within it are given automatic protection. Before carrying out any work on trees in a Conservation Area, you must notify your local authority.

How to Check if Your Tree is Protected

Not sure how to proceed? Here are some of the ways to see if any of the trees on your property are protected:

  • Contact your local council’s planning department directly. They can tell you if a TPO exists on your land, or if your tree falls within a Conservation Area. This is often the quickest and most reliable method.
  • Many local authorities have interactive maps or registers on their websites where you can check if your trees are protected. Simply enter your address or zoom into your location to see if you are within a Conservation Area or if a TPOS is in place.
  • When buying a property, the search will typically reveal if the property is in a Conservation Area. However, if you’re unsure, checking directly with the council is your best bet to avoid any surprises further down the line.
  • For expert advice, speak with a Tree Officer or equivalent within your local authority. They are specialists in tree protection and can provide detailed information about the status of your trees.

Steps to Take if Your Trees Are Protected

If you discover that your trees are protected, either by a TPO or by being in a Conservation Area, you must apply for permission if you want work to proceed without a hitch. Not sure how to do this? We can offer expert advice on how to proceed and ensure that all work is carried out legally, along with assisting you with the application process.

If permission is granted, we are able to follow the guidelines provided by the council. We’re used to working in accordance with these, and any criteria laid out by your local authority will not affect the quality of our work.

We’re Here to Help

Knowing whether any trees on your land are protected is essential for any landowner, and now you know how to do so. For more advice on what to do next, please do get in touch with our team today.

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