Council cut down my trees, Advise Please!!!!

Council cut down my trees, Advise Please!!!!

Postby Chrisbtvc » Tue Dec 10, 2013 6:21 pm

My local council came onto my privately owned land at the back of my business and cut down two on there side of the boundary line and a further two on my side of the boundary line with no notice, permission or communication. When i phoned to address this as i felt it was a criminal offence (i.e. criminal damage and theft of my trees/wood) they laughed down the phone at me. I explained i was calling to give them the opportunity to deal with this amicably, i further explained one of our long serving members of staff had prooned and looked after the trees for over 20 years.Their response was to laugh loudly down the phone and say they where sapplings and effectively weeds. (Note a tree surgeon dated one of the stumps at 35 -40 years). Their reasons for removal where good ones - they said they where going to interfere with over head lines, they where blocking street lighting... A member of their team was also seen urinating on the side of the work building.


I am very shocked that the Council feel they can do this and i personally really like trees so to have my only two cut down without communication and then to be laughed at because i liked them to me is just ridiculous.

I look forward to your hearing advice on this one - i won't be letting it go. :cry:
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Re: Council cut down my trees, Advise Please!!!!

Postby ukmicky » Tue Dec 10, 2013 11:04 pm

Their reasons for removal where good ones - they said they were going to interfere with over head lines, they were blocking street lighting...


TO is the man to answer this one.

The reasons were not good reasons in my opinion

Going to interfere is not a reason . I believe the distance is 1.5 meteres but have they any proof how close the branches were, They also failed to serve you with a notice given you the chance to do the work yourself..

They were blocking street lighting is a reason but once again they served you with no notice asking you to perform the work and they have not shown any evidence of any nuisance.

TO will know the process they are meant to follow but as they have not comunicated with you they cant have followed it.

I also presume to remove any danger of interference with power lines or lighting the trees also did not need to be cut down but only cut back. The council have done wrong , i would want compensation if they were trees i liked .

Write a letter and threaten them with legal action unless they get back to you with a reasonable offer of compensation.
Advice given is not legally qualified and you are advised to gain a professional opinion
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Re: Council cut down my trees, Advise Please!!!!

Postby Chrisbtvc » Thu Dec 12, 2013 11:26 am

Hi Micky,

Thank you for your advice, I will right a letter today and update the forum with any progress made.

If anyone knows specifically any/all specific legal breaches I would appreciate further information to include in my letter.

Thanks Again,

Chris.
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Re: Council cut down my trees, Advise Please!!!!

Postby arborlad » Thu Dec 12, 2013 6:23 pm

Chrisbtvc wrote:My local council came onto my privately owned land at the back of my business and cut down two on there side of the boundary line and a further two on my side of the boundary line



Is it clear where your boundary lies, did someone have to climb a fence to do the cutting?
arborlad

smile...it confuses people
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Re: Council cut down my trees, Advise Please!!!!

Postby TO » Sun Dec 15, 2013 4:07 pm

Hi

Couple of points.
Chrisbtvc wrote:they [the Council] said they where going to interfere with over head lines
. The Council are not statutory undertakers for power lines or telecom line so have no authority to enter your land to clear the lines, even if the trees were fouling the lines.

The Council are a highway authority so could do something about the street lights. However, this does not mean enter onto the land and fell the trees. S154 Highways Act 1980 says Where a hedge, tree or shrub overhangs a highway or any other road or footpath to which the public has access so as to endanger.... or obstructs or interferes with .... the light from a public lamp,.......a competent authority may, by notice either to the owner of the hedge, tree or shrub or to the occupier of the land on which it is growing, require him within 14 days from the date of service of the notice so to lop or cut it as to remove the cause of ....obstruction or interference.. No right of access to just go and do it. And as has been said only so much as is necessary to resolve the problem needs to be done.

I would suggest you find out who is the Director of the section that the tree surgeons work for and write to them. Keep things simple. Set out what happened, ask why did they do what they did. If the reply is the same as the reasons given over the phone write back and ask what authority they have to enter onto your land and do the works. Have a think about what you want to get by way of compensation. If they can't come up with a very good and defensible reason then tell them you intend to continue the complaint and what you want by way of compensation. Then just continue the complaint through the complaints process all the way to the Ombudsman if necessary.

Keep the letter to the point, and about the things you can prove, not the pantomime things, (he urinated against the building, oh no he didn't, oh yes he did), that you can't, no matter how much they annoy you.

TO
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Re: Council cut down my trees, Advise Please!!!!

Postby Chrisbtvc » Fri Dec 20, 2013 10:51 am

Excellent advice, once again i appreciate the help and feedback from this forum especially as i am new to it. I will draft a letter and send to them today and reply with outcome/responses.

You should add a 'Donate' button to the forum to help with running costs and where help/advice given leads to compensation i know i would certainly be happy to donate something to keep this advice/discussion line open to others in need.

:lol:

Thanks again guys will be back in touch soon with an update.

All the best,

Chris.
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