Statutory Tree Protection & Valuation
Statutory Tree Protection & Valuation
The tree protection legal maze can seem bewildering as it encompasses the provisions of several Acts of Parliament and various legal instruments. You can find a brief outline of our expertise below including a description of Tree Preservation Orders and what they mean in a free-to-use downloadable pdf.
Trees may be conferred legal protection in a number of ways including:
- Tree Preservation Orders
- Conservation Area Status
- Heritage Area Status
- The Provisions of the Forestry Act (1967)
- The Provisions of Common Law
Additional planning constraints may affect properties in situations including:
- Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty
- Sites of Special Scientific Interest
- Ancient Woodland
- Listed Buildings
- Scheduled Ancient Monuments
Lastly, properties may be subject to:
- Mortgage Deed Covenants
- Planning Conditions
Tree Preservation Order
A TPO makes it an offence to:
- Cut down
- Wilfully Damage
- Wilfully Destroy
trees, without the local planning authority’s written consent.
TPO’s are regulated under various sections of the Town and Country Planning Act (1990, as amended). In England, the Town and Country Planning (Tree Preservation) (England) Regulations 2012 were brought in to force in April 2012. In Wales, the relevant regulations are contained in the Town and Country Planning (Trees) Regulations 1999, amended most recently by Welsh Statutory Instrument 548: The Town and Country Planning (Trees) (Amendment) (Wales) Regulations 2017.
Click below to find out more about the 2012 English Regulations.
Tree protection legislation seeks to preserve the amenity, cultural and landscape values conferred to an area by protected trees. ‘Amenity value’ may be described as the characteristics that influence and enhance people’s appreciation of a particular area. These values are derived from the pleasantness, aesthetic coherence, cultural and recreational attributes of an area. This value is often used in cost-benefit analyses, to determine the worth of natural resources that will not be harvested for economic gain. Two valuation systems in wide use in the UK are ‘The Helliwell System’ and ‘Capital Asset Valuation of Amenity Trees’ (CAVAT).
The basic approach of these systems is to allocate point scores under a number of different factors such as tree size, life expectancy, suitability to setting etc. which are combined to give an overall score which can be converted to a monetary value. CAVAT is based on the cross-sectional area of the tree stem, while Helliwell is based on the visual prominence of the tree.
Both systems were originally intended as tools to assist asset managers rank trees within their stocks and prioritise their management. They have since been adapted in order to provide indications of the financial value of trees as living assets, rather than as economic resources, and have been used successfully in legal settings on many occasions.
For further advice or to discuss how we can help you please get in touch.
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Thank you so much for the work you have done for us on or tree valuation. Your report is very good, everything justified and well layed out, we are very pleased with what you have produced. We will be submitting your report in our final claim but I think you have put forward such a convincing case, backed-up with facts, that I think it will be difficult for the other side to challenge.