Leicester Trees and Woodland
Despite earning the title of Britain’s first environmental city in 1990, the City of Leicester consists of 68% developed area, making it even with Nottingham and slightly ahead of Derby (64%) in terms of other locations in the East Midlands region. 82% of the broader Leicestershire county is classed as rural, but with less than 1% of the City of Leicester classed as natural land – 34% lower than the national average – it will come as no surprise to learn that the local council are aiming to restrict any property or land developments that don’t feature adherence to the standard of the environment.
A combination of rural and urban elements, Leicester contains 130 parks and an estimated 150,000 trees scattered across the city. While many of the parks and trees in Leicester are protected by the local authorities, such a level of preservation leads developers to be more limited when it comes to staging a planning project in the city and the surrounding area. Additionally, initiatives aim to benefit local biodiversity and counteract the effects of development projects in the area, such as Climate Action Leicester and Leicestershire (CALL) – a group dedicated to the environment who plans on planting a further 100,000 trees across Leicestershire by the year 2025.
For developers with intentions of staging projects in the City of Leicester and the nearby area, restrictions over trees and wooded areas from the local council, and pledges from independent societies to plant new trees and form fresh patches of woodland, can make the planning process far more difficult. Issues involving trees and obstacles preventing successful planning applications can be entirely eliminated, however, through the insights of a licensed arboriculturist during a tree survey on your development site.
Protection for Leicester Trees
In an effort to provide developers with complete clarity over how trees across the city are protected, Leicester City Council has a page on their website under the ‘planning and building’ branch dedicated to tree protection. Throughout the United Kingdom, the two common methods of protecting trees are through tree preservation orders (TPOs) on individual trees and conservation areas for a selection of trees in any single zone.
Under section 198 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990, trees that are placed under a tree preservation order (TPO) or situated within a listed conservation area are given more protection than trees outside of these criteria. At any point where development could interfere with trees under a TPO or within a conservation area, the developer in charge of the project would be required to seek consent from the council, requesting it with a minimum of six weeks’ notice.
Surveying and Reporting for Trees
Bypassing restrictions over trees in the Leicester area is possible through organising a BS5837 tree survey with a trustworthy and reliable arboricultural consultancy. Once a date and time for an assessment has been established with the arboricultural surveyor undertaking the survey, they will conduct a site visit to analyse all trees present on the development site. Considering value and condition, all trees will be given a grading that indicates a suitable outcome for each and every tree.
In any instance, the top priority would be to retain as many trees as possible, particularly if they are of high value, in good condition or unlikely to hinder the planning project. However, if any trees possess little to no value, are in poor condition or could even breach tree safety and pose a danger to individuals on the site, or if they are obstructing the development with no possible alternative approach, the best course of action would be to move the tree elsewhere on or off the site or destroy them.
Following completion of the tree survey, the arboricultural consultant will develop a tree report to detail the survey process itself and explain the next steps that will allow the project to move forward despite the presence of trees. The local planning department of the local council will hold a tree survey report in high regard, and as such, the contents of it will contribute to the application for planning permission.
Leicester’s Best Arboriculturists
Situating arboriculturists across the length and breadth of the United Kingdom has allowed us to provide an extensive number of private and professional clients with tree surveys and other forms of arboricultural assessment. Following 15+ years of experience catering to the needs of clients, Arbtech has become a trusted provider of both arboricultural and ecological surveys, and you can rest assured that the arboricultural surveyor sent to your Leicester development site will hold the necessary qualifications, accreditations, experience and capabilities to undertake a comprehensive tree survey and support your application for planning consent.
With arboricultural consultants in the East Midlands and other sections of the UK, we can guarantee a tree survey in Leicester and the surrounding area. For a free quote, just get in touch with our team and provide them with as much detail of your site and project as possible. They can then produce an accurate quote based on your specifications, and assuming you are happy to continue, arrange a desirable time to visit your site for a tree survey and help you to take the next step in your development.