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24 May

Conservation Area minefield

I was talking to a client recently, about management of their trees.  They live in a delightful setting with historic buildings and a few trees.  The site has been designated a Conservation Area.  They pruned one of the trees.  The work was sensible, and professional undertaken.  But they didn’t follow due process.  The local authority tree officer was made aware of the issue, and the client found himself being questioned under caution, accompanied by a legal representative.  The threat of a fine was very real.  The representative grasped the situation, and swiftly made an application for consent to do the works.  This was soon approved, crisis averted.  I have now been asked to process an application to work on another tree, this time subject to a Tree Preservation Order.  The client is still puzzled.  The situation is that the process is different for trees subject to a TPO compared to those within a Conservation Area.  But if you don’t follow the process, the consequences are potentially the same!

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