Tree work carried out on or adjacent to the public highway works must be carried out in accordance with the Safety at Street Works and Road Works – A Code of Practice. This is to ensure that both operatives and highways users are safeguarded.
Ash dieback results in the timber within the tree becoming brittle, making tree felling and cutting unpredictable and more hazardous. For this reason it is important that additional safeguards are put in place, over and above what is required for other tree works, to minimise the level of risk.
Ash dieback tree works adjacent the public highway should only be carried out by suitably qualified and experienced operatives following best practice and traffic management requirements.
Where proposed traffic management necessitates the obstruction of the highway to undertake tree works safely landowners or their contractors should notify Streetscene (Tel. 01352 701234) at the planning stage.
Where possible the council will co-ordinate tree works on main roads to minimise traffic disruption.
When planning and undertaking tree works it is necessary to ensure protected species and habitats are safeguarded (e.g. nesting birds, bats and dormice), which will already be at risk because of the loss of ash tree habitat.
More information about protected species can be found on Natural Resources Wales’ website.
Unless they are in severe decline works to ash trees subject to a Tree Preservation Order (TPO) will require a formal application to be submitted to the Local Planning Authority. Similarly, works to ash trees within a Conservation Area will require a formal notification.
Anyone proposing to undertake works to an ash tree on the basis it is in severe decline and deemed exempt from the requirement to obtain approval is advised to email the Council’s Forestry Officer.
More information about protected trees can be found on the council’s other web pages.