Planning granted, yet tree officer refuses tree felling??

Re: Planning granted, yet tree officer refuses tree felling?

Postby ukmicky » Wed Jun 03, 2015 9:39 pm

Your planning permission can not grant permission to cut down the trees on other land.

You don't need planning permission however to remove any growth on your side of the boundary.

If it were me as there is no TPO I would perform my work on the trees and remove what is needed from your side of the boundary very quickly .

Once done advise the TO so he can check the safety of the trees if he wishes.

You have given the TO advanced notice that you what to cut back some of a tree which he says has amenity value. I can see a TPO being placed on then very very soon so work fast.

I would even go as far as checking that he hasn't protected them already with an interim order. Obviously you can't however ask him or he may act if he hasn't already.
Advice given is not legally qualified and you are advised to gain a professional opinion
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Re: Planning granted, yet tree officer refuses tree felling?

Postby arsie » Wed Jun 03, 2015 10:29 pm

Caveman, you get permission by asking. You have. Permission has been refused. End of.

Maybe you need to submit another planning application, with the help of a local savvy architect and perhaps a tree consultant, for an extension that does not require the trees to be felled and that can be fitted in perhaps with some non life-threatening trimming of the trees in question. This time you should make clear up-front in your application that the trees are there and that they would need to be trimmed for your development to be executed successfully.

I would reply to the tree officer's refusal with a request: what would he find acceptable? and for clarification why planning did not involve the tree officer in your first application. You may be able to get your first planning fees refunded against a second application? Ask them.

I would not take the advice to start chopping the council's trees they have mega legal support :shock:
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Re: Planning granted, yet tree officer refuses tree felling?

Postby arsie » Wed Jun 03, 2015 10:35 pm

Caveman wrote:The planning officer ... is speaking unilaterally on behalf of the entire council body when granting her permission, and it is her responsibility to take due care that everything is considered before granting permission?? A planning decision is final. I can't be held accountable if she didn't do her job properly and check if the trees would be an issue??

Sorry it ain't like that. The tree officer has authority over trees and his word is final on trees.
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Re: Planning granted, yet tree officer refuses tree felling?

Postby MacadamB53 » Thu Jun 04, 2015 12:16 am

Hi M,

Surely she is speaking unilaterally on behalf of the entire council body when granting her permission

just to be absolutely clear, the law has it that one must apply for and obtain 'planning title' (commonly called 'planning permission') before any 'development' can occur - as set out in the Town and Country Planning Act 1990.

the Secretary of State included in the legislation the making of 'local planning authorities' and bestowed obligations upon them to eg determine planning applications on his behalf.

therefore you actually applied to the Secretary of State for planning permission and he delegated it to the relevant LPA he'd created.

ie, you're not asking 'the council' for permission - you're asking the 'LPA' who happen to be part of 'the council'.

make sense?

Kind regards, Mac
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Re: Planning granted, yet tree officer refuses tree felling?

Postby arsie » Thu Jun 04, 2015 12:19 am

That doesn't help in my opinion Mac. But hey ho :roll:
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Re: Planning granted, yet tree officer refuses tree felling?

Postby Caveman » Thu Jun 04, 2015 11:38 am

Ive purchased the land registry plans showing the footpath running alongside my land. It turns out that the footpath is in fact a right of way, and that the footpath actually sits on private land owned by Taylor Wimpey. However, the boundary line, either side of the footpath is owned by the District Council. It is now unclear who owns the trees, as one could argue either way.

No idea how to establish ownership??
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Re: Planning granted, yet tree officer refuses tree felling?

Postby Roblewis » Thu Jun 04, 2015 11:50 am

No one can own a boundary - it is the meeting point of adjacent properties. If the RoW is owned by TW then I suspect they own it fence line across to fence line. The LA are probably only involved under some maintenance agreement and the trees were part of this agreement. Contact TW and they may be willing to give permission re these trees subject to a re planting agreement with yourself. I think it wise to let matters go quiet with the TPO for a while though :wink:

I find it hard to understand why these trees are not TPOed if they are of such amenity. Even your enquiry has not resulted in an emergency TPO so I suspect the officer is concerned that they cannot prove amenity to the standards that may be necessary and is simply cajoling you to doing what they want.
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Re: Planning granted, yet tree officer refuses tree felling?

Postby TO » Thu Jun 04, 2015 11:56 am

Caveman wrote:So my questions are:
1. Can I legally cut down the trees with no legal recourse if needed?
2. If I remove the canopy on one side of both trees (that which overhangs my land), and remove all the roots on my land (rendering the trees unsafe/unstable), who is liable if something were to happen as a result of the trees falling down, causing damage or injury?


1. No. They are not your trees.
2. In part you, and in part the Council. It would be for the Courts to decide the proportion of blame each party must bear. Assuming of course the plaintiff can prove the severing of roots and branches was the cause of the tree failure in the first instance.

The tree officer is powerless to stop the consented works being implemented. And when determining the application due consideration was given to the impact on the trees, allegedley. Personally I can't see a problem. The planning consent doesn't require the felling of the trees, which in any event are not on the OP's land,just some pruning.

TO
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Re: Planning granted, yet tree officer refuses tree felling?

Postby APC » Thu Jun 04, 2015 1:13 pm

Yeah, what TO said.

If you have ticked the box saying there are nearby trees then the LPA have ballsed up a bit by not requesting a Tree Survey/Arb Impact Assessment/Arb Method Statement at this stage. Some LPA's won't even validate a planning app without this information. The AIA would have picked up the potential need to carry out root/crown pruning and at this stage the LPA could have sent you back to the drawing board. My opinion is that the LPA have missed the boat with TPO'ing if they have granted permission and you have discharged any applicable conditions. Unless of course they granted permission subject to AMS/foundation design conditions, in the hope that you would submit plans that showed you won't be buggering up the trees too much.
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Re: Planning granted, yet tree officer refuses tree felling?

Postby Caveman » Thu Jun 04, 2015 1:19 pm

So where does this leave me?

I have spoken to a lawyer, and was told that this is a civil, not a criminal matter, so the worst they could do is try and recoup compensation for the cost of the trees if I cut them down?

I'm so fed up with this bureaucracy. Surely common sense dictates that it's in everyone's interest to cut the feckers down??
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Re: Planning granted, yet tree officer refuses tree felling?

Postby APC » Thu Jun 04, 2015 1:21 pm

Caveman wrote:I'm so fed up with this bureaucracy. Surely common sense dictates that it's in everyone's interest to cut the ****s down??


You mean in your interest?
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Re: Planning granted, yet tree officer refuses tree felling?

Postby APC » Thu Jun 04, 2015 1:22 pm

What conditions did they make?
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Re: Planning granted, yet tree officer refuses tree felling?

Postby Caveman » Thu Jun 04, 2015 1:50 pm

No conditions surrounding the trees.
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Re: Planning granted, yet tree officer refuses tree felling?

Postby arsie » Thu Jun 04, 2015 3:06 pm

Caveman, assuming the trees remain, you may need to take advice on foundations. You may need to make them bigger. Building control (yet another arm of the local authority) will speak out when the inspector visits to inspect the dug trenches. Then it will be up to you to convince the inspector using a qualified surveyor to do calcs and to report on the necessary sizing of the foundations near these trees. The inspector won't let you pour foundation concrete without an expert report, that they accept, and without seeing the agreed sized dug trenches.

We had old deciduous hedges within a few metres and this meant we had to do this on our build. I would think mature maples at a similar distance will also demand bigger foundations. Maple is quite a thirsty tree - see http://www.subsidencebureau.com/subsidence_trees.htm
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Re: Planning granted, yet tree officer refuses tree felling?

Postby TO » Thu Jun 04, 2015 3:26 pm

Hi

What bureaucracy? Implement your consent, or are you trying to use that as an excuse to fell the trees you've always wanted rid of. They don't need felling, they're not yours to fell, and if you take your lawyers advice you'll be very quickly looking for another lawyer to sue the first one. It's not a civil matter.

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