CS31: Legal Constraints (TPOs)

In the previous post I briefly mentioned the four legal constraints as written in the CS31 NPTC assessment schedule; and in this post I want to introduce more fully the Tree Preservation Order. There's plenty of information about this on the 'net including the updates and amendments, so all I want to do is to try and give you a flavour of what it's about.

Find out more after the jump...

The Tree Preservation Order (hereafter just called TPO so that I don't have to keep typing it out in full!) is designed to provide a level of protection for trees and woodland that have amenity value. The TPO is part of the Town and Country Planning Act, and it should be noted that it's used by local authorities in England.

The TPO prohibits the...

  • cutting down

  • uprooting

  • topping

  • lopping

  • wilful damage, or...

  • wilful destruction

...of any tree that has had a preservation order placed upon it by the local authority (note that this also includes tree roots). Interestingly, the Act does not define what a 'tree' is; or indeed a 'woodland' for that matter! In essence, if it would be normal to call it a tree, then it's a tree for the purposes of this, however shrubs, bushes and hedgerows are not covered. There is no minimum size for a tree, and it can include fruit trees, but this is dependent upon the amenity value.

A TPO can be placed upon a tree after it has been assessed for it's value, the individual impact and the wider impact on it's surroundings. A TPO can apply to an individual tree, a group of trees, or an entire woodland.

In order to work on a tree that is protected, one has to apply to the local planning authorities tree officer; there is [now] a standard application form and this must be completed showing the work to be carried out and a plan of exactly which tree, or trees, are to be worked on. The authorities can then assess the impact of the proposed work and allow, amend or deny the request.

And that's about it really - if you want to know more about TPOs, check out this PDF document Tree Preservation Orders: A Guide To The Law And Good Practice.

- DriveLink -

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