Overview of Hertfordshire Trees
A county regarded for its historic and natural value, Hertfordshire in the East of England features an extensive selection of small towns and villages, as well as a wealth of countryside locations. Based on population, the most popular parts of Hertfordshire include Watford, Hemel Hempstead, Steveage, St Albans, Welwyn Garden City, Cheshunt, Hatfield, Potters Bar and Bishop’s Stortford.
From the more than 164,400 hectares of land across the county, Hertfordshire has an estimated 10.75% of tree cover, including 460 hectares of woodland from its rural estate. The county itself is 70% rural, but with tree numbers dwindling over a period of two decades, woodland figures reduced by 3% between 2000 and 2010.
Initiatives managed by the local communities and the corresponding council intend on counteracting the depletion of tree numbers and plant countless more trees all over the county. The Your Tree, Our Future campaign from Hertfordshire County Council, for instance, aims to provide more than 100,000 trees to the residents of Hertfordshire.
It is the responsibility of all local authorities to safeguard valuable green areas and features within their jurisdiction. Although a common asset throughout the country, trees are seen as important, particularly due to the environmentally positive properties they possess such as the ability to absorb carbon dioxide and emit oxygen. Considering the value they hold, trees can pose issues to nearby developments, requiring a tree survey from an arboricultural consultancy with a proven track record of producing an outstanding service before any protected trees are unnecessarily disturbed.
Local Tree Protection
Active protections for trees throughout Hertfordshire apply to all parts of the county, including in the areas of Broxbourne, Dacorum, East Hertfordshire, Hertsmere, North Hertfordshire, St Albans, Stevenage, Three Rivers, Watford and Welwyn Hatfield (Welwyn Garden City and Hatfield), as well as surrounding areas such as North London. Universally recognised and enforced all over the UK, conservation areas and Tree Preservation Orders (TPOs) act as the two primary methods of safeguarding trees from unnecessary harm.
The concepts of conservation areas and Tree Preservation Orders (TPOs) are similar in a number of ways, such as the facts that they are governed by the local council, solely impact trees, and demand consent prior to any development works that would otherwise disturb trees on the development site. A Tree Preservation Order (TPO) only applies to individual trees, however, while a conservation area will apply to all trees located within an outlined zone.
- Broxbourne Borough Council
- Dacorum Borough Council
- East Herts Council
- Hertsmere Borough Council
- North Hertfordshire District Council
- St Albans City and and District Council
- Stevenage Borough Council
- Three Rivers District Council
- Watford Borough Council
- Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council
Inspections on Trees
In any development involving trees, the first step would be to arrange a BS5837 tree survey, allowing for an arboriculturist to attend the site and evaluate all trees present. Using multiple factors, the arboricultural consultant will determine the condition and value of all trees on the development site before producing suitable measures for each and every tree that will please the local planning authority and allow the planning project to move forward. After the arboricultural surveyor has looked over the site, each tree will be branded with a grading, and based on the grading, the mitigation hierarchy will command the necessary next steps.
Any trees that are unlikely to impact or be impacted by the development will be safe from intervention. The tree surveyor’s priority will be to retain as many trees as possible, but if they are set to obstruct the development, affected trees will need to be relocated or destroyed. Likewise, any trees that are in poor condition or pose a potential health and safety hazard will also need to be destroyed, with all destroyed trees compensated for with the planting of new trees. A tree report will then be created by the arboriculturist to detail the BS5837 tree survey process, findings from the assessment, and measures that will enable the project to continue into future stages, including tree removal, retention, relocation and destruction.
As the detailed report will consider all key areas and offer pragmatic solutions to the local planning authority, the planning officer should see no reason to deny the application for planning permission on the site. All tree services result in tree reports, giving commercial or residential clients all the in-depth evidence they need to prove that the work carried out on their development site would do a fantastic job in dealing with trees accordingly. While BS5837 tree surveys often suffice, if you need further tree services, our team possesses the sufficiently extensive knowledge of trees and each scientific name by species to return to the site for a second time and conduct an excellent service if additional tree surveys are needed.
Book a Tree Assessment
By planning tree surveys early into the development process and acknowledging the need for an assessment based on trees that could hold existing protections, you can remove any issues that would act as a troublesome hindrance later into your development plans. Acting pre-emptively will also allow you to book a slot for a full tree survey and guarantee that an inspection can be undertaken on a date that works for you. You can then plan your schedule and remove any obstructions that would otherwise harm your planning application.
For the best value and an accurate quote, we will need the specifications of your site and project. All you need to do is speak to our team online or over the phone to make initial contact and provide us with your details. Using your information, our office staff can send across a free quote for the excellent service we provide, and if you are happy with it, let us know and we can arrange a date to conduct the assessment. On the day of the inspection, a tree surveyor will attend your site to conduct the required professional tree surveys and assist you in securing planning consent.