Trees on development sites and landscaping schemes

On sites with existing trees, planning applications must include a tree survey and tree constraints plan, as detailed in British Standard 5837: 2012 trees in relation to construction, with their planning application.

Any existing trees to be retained should be protected during the course of development in accordance with measures specified in the British Standard.

We often grant planning permission subject to conditions requiring the submission of a landscaping scheme. Such schemes usually involve tree and shrub planting. This is known as soft landscaping.

Soft landscaping should be carried out in the first planting season following the completion of development. A planting season normally runs from 1 October in any one year to 31 March in the next following year.

Any landscaping is normally protected by condition for a period of five years.

The following guidelines are also applicable to general use:

  • before planting any trees, be sure you understand how large they will grow;
  • consider planting locally native species. These are more likely to thrive and provide better wildlife habitats; and
  • for a guide as to species which will grow well, look at what is already growing locally.

Forestry schemes

Forestry is regulated by the Forestry Commission, which gives grants for planting new woodlands in certain circumstances under the Woodland Grant Scheme.

Felling licences

Anyone intending to fell more than five cubic metres of timber per calendar quarter (or two cubic metres if it is for sale) must have a licence from the Forestry Commission.

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