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Apply to work on a protected tree

Tree Preservation Orders (TPO) are placed on trees that are important to the character of a particular area.

What trees are protected by a TPO?

Any tree that has been assessed to provide good levels of amenity to a local area can be protected by a TPO.  Not all trees worthy of a TPO have been assessed and new TPOs are served regularly.

How do I check whether a tree is protected by a TPO?

Check the map to see if a particular tree is protected by a TPO.

Carrying out works to TPO protected trees

If you want to carry out work on a tree protected by a TPO, you need to provide a valid tree works application to get consent for the works before starting

The quickest and easiest way to apply 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.

A valid application will provide the following information:

  • A detailed plan showing the location the tree(s).
  • A clear description of the works being applied for.
  • The reasons for carrying out the works.
  • Any such information and/or reports required to demonstrate the need for the works.

How long does an application take?

We have 8 weeks to make a decision on a TPO application.  If a decision is not made during that time, you do not have the right to go ahead.  Consent must be given before works can start.

After 8 weeks, you do have the right to appeal to the planning inspectorate if you haven't received a decision.

Do I have to pay?

No. TPO applications 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.

You can discuss your application with the Arboricultural Officer at any time during this process.