Trees and hedges

TreesTrees and hedgerows make an important contribution to both the built and rural environment. There are a number of safeguards within the planning legislation that may affect an owner's ability to do works to trees and hedgerows. They may be subject to planning conditions attached to a previous grant of planning permission that requires their retention, they may be in a conservation area or they may be the subjects of a Tree Preservation Order. Separate regulations exist in respect of Hedgerows.

Subject to planning permission

When planning permission is granted for development conditions might be added that requires the submission of and implementation of a landscaping scheme. In such circumstances the trees planted will, normally, be required to be retained. If work was proposed to trees or other planting covered by a condition then the written consent of the Authority would first be required.

Trees in conservation areas

Proposals to top, lop, fell or uproot trees in conservation areas require the consent of the Council. Prior to such work being undertaken you should inform the Council of your intentions, confirming where the tree(s) is, what work you wish to undertake and why, in cases of felling you should comment as to whether or not you intend any re-planting. A form that will provide us with the required information is available (work to trees in conservation areas). Benefit will come from submitting an independent arboricultural appraisal of the work intended.

Following receipt of your application the Council will within 6 weeks either confirm acceptance of the work or it they object will make the trees the subject of a Tree Preservation Order. If no decision is received within 6 weeks then consent is gained by default.

Tree Preservation Orders

A Tree Preservation Order (TPO) gives statutory protection to individual trees, groups of trees and woodlands. TPO's can be made by the Council when they consider the tree(s) are of amenity value and there may be a risk of work being done to them that would harm that value.

Prior to doing work to such a protected tree i.e. top, lop, fell or uproot consent should be gained from the Council. A form that will provide us with the information we need to consider an application is available. (Works to trees the subject of a TPO). The application must state the reasons for making the application and by reference to a plan specify the trees to which the application relates and the operations for which consent is required. Benefit will come from submitting an independent arboricultural appraisal of the work intended. It is a criminal offence to do works to such trees without first having the benefit of consent.

Within 8 weeks of receipt the Council is required to either grant consent, unconditionally or subject to conditions, or refuse consent. In circumstances where it is found necessary to refuse consent then there is a right of appeal against that decision.


It is against the law to remove most countryside hedgerows without permission. Hedgerows that are shorter than 20 metres or that are in or borders a garden may not need consent to be removed. If you wish to remove a hedgerow you can contact a planning officer to check if consent is required. If you do require consent the form below can be used (hedgerow removal notice).

Upon receipt of the application the council must consider whether or not the hedgerow is important. The assessment of importance will be based on age, archaeological, historical, wildlife or landscape value.

If it is considered necessary to prohibit removal of the hedgerow then the applicant must be notified within 6 weeks.

Applications for Works

Applications for Works on Trees and Hedgerows can be made online using the Planning Portal link below or alternatively using the printable form on our planning applications page.

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Contact us

0303 123 1702

Allerdale Borough Council
Allerdale House, Workington, Cumbria,
CA14 3YJ