Trees, landscape and ecology
We cover a wide range of landscape, arboriculture, biodiversity and countryside management work throughout the Vale. We aim to protect and to enhance the landscape we live in.
The council's Arboriculture Officer provides advice on issues relating to protected trees. Trees are protected in various ways through Tree Preservation Orders (TPOs), trees in Conservation Areas and trees protected through planning conditions.
If you need advice relating to trees on council land, please contact our parks department on 01235 422404 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tree Preservation Orders (TPOs)
There are hundreds of trees throughout the Vale protected by Tree Preservation Orders (TPOs). To carry out work to these trees written consent is required from the council. To obtain an application form for such works, download a form from our planning page - Make a planning application - (for works to trees you will need form 34). To find out if a tree is covered by a TPO, please use our Interactive Map showing trees protected by Tree Preservation Orders and Conservation areas.
Unauthorised works that severely damage or destroy a protected tree can lead to fines of up to £20,000. If you are planning work on a tree that you suspect may be protected it is strongly advised that you check first.
You can check if your property falls within the conservation area or if the trees are covered by a tree preservation order using the TPO and conservation area search.
Anyone wanting to carry out works on trees over 75 mm (3inches) diameter at breast height within a conservation area must give the council six weeks written notice including a plan. The council will consider the proposed works and respond appropriately. Sometimes this response is followed by a TPO. Similar penalties to the TPO are incurred if these regulations are broken. For more information see our page on Conservation areas in the Vale.
To view applications received to carry out works to protected trees please see our Tree Works Register.
You can check if your property falls within the conservation area or if the trees are covered by a tree preservation order using the Interactive Map.
Condition of planning regulations - These are conditions attached to planning consents and require written permission from the council before undertaking works.
Forestry Act - This is administered by the and involves gaining permission to fell trees on your land. Removal of over five cubic metres of timber in any one calendar quarter may require a Felling Licence. For advice regarding tree protection please contact the Arboricultural Officer.
Ecology- Development and great crested newts
Vale of White Horse District Council has been issued a District licence from Natural England, allowing developers to participate in a new great crested newt licencing scheme. This new scheme has the potential to save time and costs for developments where great crested newts may be impacted, at the same time as benefitting the great crested newt population.
Climate emergency and biodiversity
We are currently scoping, costing and evaluating a number of proposals for the District around biodiversity in response to the council’s climate emergency declaration. These proposals include tree planting, investigating options for setting up a Habitat Bank and considering an increase of Community Infrastructure Levy receipt spending on supporting biodiversity/green infrastructure projects. We are working with the Climate Emergency Advisory Committee (CEAC) to prioritise options in December, options prioritised by the CEAC will then be taken forward for inclusion into a future climate change strategy which will be recommended for implementation to the Cabinet by the CEAC. Additionally, we are in the early stages of a county-wide collaboration to address the climate emergency for Oxfordshire.
Last reviewed: 08 - 01 - 2020