Works to protected dangerous trees

Dangerous trees

Local planning authority consent is not required for cutting down or carrying out work on tree(s) which are dead or dangerous. This exemption also allows the removal of dead branches from a tree or the removal of dangerous branches from an otherwise sound tree.

Determining whether a tree is dead or dangerous is not always a straightforward matter. Whether or not a tree has become dangerous for the purpose of the statutory exemption is a question of fact. If you believe the tree(s) have become dangerous you must provide us with five days notice in writing before carrying out the works.

Anyone who is not sure whether the tree falls within the exemption is advised to obtain the advice of a professional tree consultant.

If such harm or damage is far off, remote and not immediate, the trees do not come within the meaning of the exemption. 

If it is an emergency where works are urgently necessary to remove an immediate risk of serious harm, notice in writing of the proposed activities shall be given to the authority as soon as practicable after the works become necessary.

If work is carried out on a protected tree under the dead exemption, the burden of proof to show, on the balance of probabilities, that the tree was dead or dangerous rests with the defendant.

Outside woodlands, the landowner is under a duty to replace a tree protected by tree preservation order (TPO) which is removed because it is dead or has become dangerous. The duty on the landowner is to plant another tree of an appropriate size and species at the same place as soon as he or she reasonably can.

Last updated: 17/05/2023 11:00