Croydon’s Intent on Greener Development
A cleaner, greener Croydon is the goal in the eyes of the local authorities, and you won’t be surprised to read that trees are an integral part of this transformation. In fact, the borough planted hundreds of new trees in 2022, and the trend shows no sign of slowing down, with an estimated 3,500 trees planted by the conclusion of 2022 and more expected to follow in a bid to improve air quality. Croydon now contains plenty of trees, even reaching a larger total tree cover than certain countryside areas.
Featuring alongside Camden in the top 20 places in England and Wales with the most tree cover, the immense tree population in Croydon is admittedly helped by the number of trees appearing in private garden locations. That said, it remains a commendable commitment to improving the calibre of the local environment. In addition, it hasn’t been at the expense of development. For instance, a recent £5.25 billion regeneration programme had the sole aim of revitalising the town centre, meaning a number of new homes, more than 23,000 new jobs, and a significant expansion of the local infrastructure.
Both developers and homeowners alike will benefit from such an investment into Croydon, as opportunities to improve unused or under-utilised sites and maximise the value of existing properties are plentiful and carry practically endless potential. The only thing to bear in mind at this point is that while trees aren’t necessarily a barrier to development, it is crucial that a tree survey is arranged to ensure that they are considered in the right way and integrated into the design process.
Defending Trees During Construction Work
Abundant tree populations and extensive tree canopy cover mean that the likelihood of having to contend with one or more trees in the course of a development project in Croydon is high. Not only that but if that is the case, it shouldn’t be taken lightly, as if the tree officer comes to the conclusion that sufficient measures haven’t been put in place to protect and retain the better-quality trees on or adjacent to the development site, the application for planning consent will be refused.
Opting to interfere with a tree at any level that is located in a conservation area could result in a fine of up to £20,000, and if the tree is under an existing tree preservation order (TPO), the fine could be far harsher. An example of this would be from back in 2019 when both a director of Enzo Homes and the development company itself were fined £300,000 for felling a 176-year-old giant redwood without prior consent from the corresponding local council. As such, developers should see it as a warning against disregarding trees that could potentially be situated in conservation areas or placed under ongoing tree preservation orders.
Tree Inspection Services
Several regular tree inspections are available to suit a wide range of needs. As for an individual tree or groups of trees on a development site, the common option would be to execute a BS5837 tree survey. An arboricultural consultant will visit the site on a set date to put all trees into categories based on health, size, historical significance, predicted longevity, and value in the ecosystem. Categories vary from A to U, and the decisions will set out the next steps for each tree between the options of retention, relocation, and destruction with the condition of compensation.
Retention ranks as the priority outcome, but tree consultants will be left with no reason but to relocate trees that are an impediment to the proposed development or destroy trees if they have suffered direct or indirect damage, or if they could present a potential risk to people or buildings on the site. In the event that any trees are destroyed, compensation will be available in the form of an obligation to plant another tree on or off the site, thereby restoring any environmental quality that was lost.
Straight after the tree survey has been completed, the arboricultural surveyor will put together a tree report that will comprehensively break down all of the findings from the assessment. If any further tree services in Croydon are required before planning permission can be granted, it may suggest a need for an arboricultural impact assessment (AIA) or arboricultural method statement (AMS). An ideal end result would be that no additional tree surveys are required and the tree survey report can instruct the local authorities to accept the application for planning consent.
Call on Our Expert Arboricultural Consultants
With an intention to cater to the many clients all over the country, we ensure that our tree consultants are able to undertake tree surveys on development sites in almost any location. From homeowners to tree owners and private developers to professional developers, we can guarantee that all our clients are given just as much opportunity to arrange a tree survey. Croydon or other parts of London and Southern England are included, and more upon request following a conversation with our team.
Whether you need a tree survey on an individual tree or any level of tree inspections on groups of trees across a vast development site, notify our team and we can work with you to find an adequate solution. You can even receive a free quote, giving you a chance to look over your options and the tree service we offer before committing. Just email us, call us, fill out a quote form or check out our contact page, and once you’ve submitted your information, we can work with you to choose a date for your tree survey and begin helping you in your endeavour to achieve planning permission.