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Carrying out work on trees

Trees in the Harborough district are owned and maintained by different organisations and individuals:

  • Trees in some public spaces are maintained by Harborough District Council
  • Trees on pavements and roadsides are maintained by Leicestershire County Council
  • Trees on private land, such as your or a neighbour’s property, are the land owner’s responsibility

Trees in public spaces

Many trees in public spaces in the Harborough district are maintained by Harborough District Council, this includes trees in parks and gardens.

You can request work is carried out on the trees we own.

Read our policies for work on council owned trees.

Trees on pavements and roadsides

Trees on roadsides and verges in the Harborough district are maintained by Leicestershire County Council. You can request Leicestershire County Council carry out work on trees on pavements and roadsides.

Trees on private land

Trees on private land, such as your own or a neighbour’s property are the responsibility of the land owner.

You can trim branches or roots that cross into your property from a neighbour’s property or a public road. You can only trim up to the property boundary. If you do more than this, your neighbour could take you to court for damaging their property.

If you believe there is an issue with a tree on private land you can speak to the land owner to try and resolve the problem. Read a guide to resolving disputes with neighbours.

If you live in a conservation area, or the trees in the hedge are protected by a tree preservation order you will need to tell us about the work you would like to carry out.

Protected trees

Works to trees and hedgerows may require permission. If a tree is protected by a Tree Preservation Order (TPO), or is situated in a designated conservation area, in most cases you will need to obtain consent from us before carrying out any works to that tree. We protect specific trees and woodland from deliberate damage and destruction. They are legally protected by a Tree Preservation Order (TPO). You can find out if a tree is protected by contacting us.

Trees in conservation areas also have some protection and permission to carry out work on them is required. You can view a list of our Conservation Areas here.

There are exceptions to requiring permission. These can be found here.

Permission to carry out work on protected trees

Anyone proposing to cut down or carry out work on trees protected by a Tree Preservation Order or a tree that is in a conservation area is required to give the council 6 weeks' prior notice  - this is legally known as a 'section 211 notice'

Tell us about proposed works to a tree that has a Tree preservation Order or is in a conservation area.

We will consider whether a Tree Preservation Order (TPO) should be made for the tree you would like to carry out work on. There are some exceptions to this rule including:

  • Work carried out by, or on our behalf
  • Work on a tree with a diameter not exceeding 75mm, or 100mm if cutting down trees to improve the growth of other trees such as thinning operation

We will deal with your request to carry out work on protected trees (section 211 notice) in one of 3 ways:

  1. Make a Tree Preservation Order if justified - the proposed works to the tree would then have to be the subject of a formal application under the Tree Preservation Order
  2. Decide not to make a Tree Preservation Order and allow the 6 week period to expire, at which point the proposed work may go ahead as long as it is carried out within 2 years from the date of the notice
  3. Decide not to make a Tree Preservation Order and inform the applicant that the work can go ahead