Trees & Hedges

Trees make a positive contribution to the character of the landscape through their historic, aesthetic and sentimental values. The Council is responsible for the maintenance of trees on Council-owned land, including trees on commons, in parks and open spaces. Our Tree Officer deals with deciding applications for works to protected trees and for deciding High Hedges cases. 

We offer an online service to report an issue with a council-owned tree. To see more information about works on council owned trees please see our council-owned trees guidance sheet.

Protected Trees

Tree Preservation Orders (TPOs) protect selected trees and woodlands if their removal would have a significant impact on the local environment and its enjoyment by the public. It is an offence to cut down, uproot, prune, damage or destroy protected tree(s) without the Local Authority's permission. 

Trees in Conservation Areas

There is a duty upon anyone wishing to conduct works to a tree in a Conservation Area to give us 6 weeks notice in writing listing the intended work together with a map showing the location of the trees . All trees in Conservation Areas which are 7.5cm in diameter measured at 1.5 metres above the ground in which they grow are protected. If the work is to promote growth of other trees in woodland this minimum diameter increases to 10cm. 

Further information and advice:

Other types of tree protection

Felling which involves more than 5m³ of timber, or more than 2m³ if sold, may require a felling licence from the Forestry Commission. For further information, please visit the Forestry Commission website 

Many wildlife habitats are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act and the Countryside and Rights of Way Act. This includes bat roosts and the nests of wild birds. If a tree contains a protected habitat, work may have to be delayed or may require a licence from Natural England. For further information, please visit the Natural England website.

Trees may sometimes be protected by conditions attached to planning permission.

Occasionally, restrictive covenants attached to the deeds for a property may restrict what work can be undertaken to trees.

Downloadable documents:

For queries relating to protected trees contact or phone 01252 774419.

Householders looking to develop or expand their property should be aware that some works can impact on trees - see our guide to 'Buying a tree with a house in the garden'.

Council-owned trees 

The Council has adopted a Tree Risk Management Strategy covering trees on land on which it has an interest. Our land can include commons, nature reserves and other public open space. For queries regarding Council-owned trees complete our online form. Alternatively please contact the Countryside Department on 01252 622122 or email  

Trees beside roads

Hampshire County Council is the Highway Authority for Hart District Council. Trees growing on road verges are generally the responsibility of the Highway Authority. Queries or issues regarding trees next to roads should be logged on the Hampshire County Council online form.

Trees in parks

Trees within public parks are generally managed by the relevant town or parish councils. Please contact these directly with your enquiry.

High Hedges

If you have a disagreement with your neighbour about the height of a hedge that they own then you should try to amicably resolve the situation. If all possible methods of resolving the problem have been tried and been unsuccessful, a complaint can be made to the Council. Any application to us for resolution of a high hedges case must be backed up with written evidence. A guide to how and when to apply to the Council is given in the Communities and Local Government website.

We charge £400 for this service, split into two parts:

  • £50 for us to validate the complaint - non-refundable
  • £350 if we decide to investigate the complaint - non-refundable

Tree Risk Management Policy

In 2018 Hart District Council published a tree risk management policy.