Trees and high hedges - Tree Preservation Orders

Service information


Tree Preservation Orders (TPO)

A tree preservation order (TPO) is an order made by a local planning authority (LPA) in respect of trees or woodlands. The principal effect of a TPO is to prohibit the cutting down, uprooting, topping, lopping, wilful damage or wilful destruction of trees without the local plannig authority's consent. 

The cutting of roots, although not expressly covered above, is potentially damaging and so requires the local plannig authority's consent​

To ascertain whether a tree is protected by a TPO or Conservation Area, please contact the Council giving the full address details of the tree(s) in question.

Find out more about Tree Preservation Orders​

Apply for a TPO

If you would like to request that a new TPO is made to protect a tree(s), please use the online form and provide as much information as possible to justify your reasons.

Apply for permission to work on protected trees

If you would like to carry out work on protected trees, please complete the form and return to us.

Planting and managing trees in your garden

Visit the Arboricultural Association website for more information.

High hedges

In the eyes of the law a high hedge is defined as a barrier to light or access and is formed wholly or predominantly by a line of two or more evergreens and rises to a height of more than two metres above ground level.

You can find out whether your hedge is within the law by using the high hedge calculator.

Hedges blocking my neighbours light

There is a useful booklet to help people assess whether an evergreen hedge is blocking too much daylight and sunlight to neighbouring properties

Settling disputes

The Council encourages people to try and settle any disputes with neighbours about high hedges between themselves.  The documents below provide useful advice and guidance on how to do this.

Over the garden hedge - this leaflet provides advice on how to settle your hedge differences without involving the local authority. This process must be attempted before a complaint can be made to your local authority

High hedges complaints: prevention and cure - this detailed booklet contains useful information and guidance on how to settle high hedge disputes yourself.  The booklet also explains how to complain to the council, what type of complaints the Council will consider and how it deals with them.  Information on high hedge legislation and appeals is also available. 

Council help with disputes

The types of complaints that the Council will deal with are highlighted in the high hedges complaints, prevention and cure booklet.  The Complaining to the Council leaflet explains what will happen if the Council gets involved.

Complaining to the Council

If you would like to complain to the council about a high hedge please complete and return the form.

Appealing against a Council decision

High hedges - appealing against a Council decision - this booklet explains the procedures for appealing.

Appeal application form

Consent issues

Consent to prune or fell a protected tree to resolve light issues

This will not be granted unless it is over ruled by the high hedge legislation. However, crown-raising works will be allowed to alleviate light issues.

Consent to prune or fell a protected tree to resolve satellite, television or radio interference

This will generally not be granted and alternative methods of boosting reception, change the receiving location or changing the provider should be sought. However, slight pruning works may be granted if it would resolve the issue completely.

Consent to remove the top of my protected tree

This will not be granted as topping out is very bad practice and leads to numerous problems and safety issues.

Consent to fell protected trees that are making paths, cars or property sticky

This will not be granted. The sticky residue is excreted from aphids that feed on the tree. Aphid residue is not an actionable nuisance therefore alternative methods of prevention or cleaning is required.

Consent to prune a protected tree touching properties

This will be granted with written consent; consent will always be granted to prune back protected trees that are touching properties.

Consent to prune or fell my protected tree entangled telephone lines

This will not be granted; call your telephone provider quoting NJUG 10 (National Joint Utilities Group publication number 10) and they should reroute the wires for free.

Planting replacement trees

If you have been given consent to remove a protected tree there is a legal duty under the Town and Country planning Act to plant replacement trees.​​​​​​

Contact details

Mail Development control, Regeneration and environment, Room 1, Town hall, Blackburn. BB1 7DY
Phone Number(s) 01254 585786
Fax Number(s)  
Extra Information
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