Tree Clearances for Boundary Maintenance…


Tree Clearances for Boundary Maintenance…

Here at BTAC, we do a lot of boundary maintenance work for both agricultural customers and private homeowners. I will often be talking to someone about fence repairs, ditches or clearing shrubs and hedges. One of the trickier aspects of boundary maintenance involves trees. This is because trees are not always allowed to be cleared depending on where they are. However, that doesn’t mean that we can’t take action with trees to ensure your property’s boundary isn’t overgrown and causing a nuisance. There are five things you need to know.

1. Felling licenses – these are a requirement in most places where you want to take a tree out that is not on private land. In other words, you don’t need to apply to the Forestry Commission for one in your garden but in other locations, you might need to check.

2. Restrictive covenants – these are legal contracts that mean the current landowner has to abide by a pre-existing agreement. They can cover all sorts of things including trees.
3. Site of special scientific interest (SSSI) – if you have a species growing in your woodland or boundary that is rare and of interest to science, then an SSSI may be in place. This could prevent any work from being conducted in the area let alone clearing a tree. Taking unwarranted action in an SSSI could lead to a fine and even a conviction for the worst cases.
4. Planning authorities – these don’t often come into play with boundary maintenance but if you want to clear a tree or two so that you can subsequently build on the land to the edge of your property then the local planning authority will need to be notified first. Please note that affected building works might not be at the boundary but some way inside your property, too. This is because the roots of certain trees may be protected and these can extend a long way from the perimeter.
5. Tree preservation orders (TPOs) – such orders tend to affect properties within or on the edge of a conservation zone. TPOs can be put in place on trees outside of a conservation zone, of course, but they should be considered to exist anywhere within them. Even lopping a tree with a TPO – let alone clearing one – is an offence unless you seek permission before so doing.

If you need any advice or work doing then get in touch.
Regards, Brian 07710 780943 x

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