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Trees in conservation areas

Trees in conservation areas are protected as they are an important part of the look and character of a conservation area.

Which trees are protected?

Any tree within a conservation area with a stem diameter over 7.5cm (measured at a height of 1.5m) is protected, regardless of species, age or visibility. 

Visit the Department for Communities and Local Government for detailed information on conservation areas.

How do I check whether a tree is protected by a conservation area?

Check the map to see if a particular tree is in a conservation area.

Carrying out works to trees in a Conservation Area

If you want to carry out work on a tree in a conservation area, you need to notify us at least 6 weeks before you intend to start the work.

A valid notification must provide a detailed written description of the works to be undertaken, along with an accurate description of the tree's location, preferably shown on a plan.

The quickest and easiest way to notify us is via the Planning Portal website, where everything can be uploaded electronically.

Alternatively you can complete and return our   Apply to work on a protected tree [730KB]  form.

How long does it take to get permission?

We have a 6 week period in which to assess the suitability of the works from when a valid notification has been received.

If works are found to not be suitable then the tree could be protected with a tree preservation order (TPO) to stop the works from going ahead.

Do I have to pay?

No. Conservation area notifications are free of charge.

Who can carry out the work?

Tree work is dangerous and should only be carried out by well-trained, fully insured arboricultural contractors. Search for approved contractors on the Arboricultural Association website.

Felling licences

If you are planning to fell more than 5 cubic metres (2-3 mature trees) you might need a felling licence from the Forestry Commission, even if council TPO's or other restrictions apply.

Contact the Forestry Commission for more information.

Contact our Arboricultural Officer if you have any further questions about trees in conservation areas.