Trees improve the appearance of towns and cities. Some trees are so important that we protect them.
Tree preservation orders
Tree preservation orders (TPOs) protect single trees, groups of trees or areas of woodland. If a tree has a TPO, it is an offence to cut it down, top it, lop it, uproot, or deliberately damage or destroy it without our permission.
Newham has over 400 trees with TPOs.
If you destroy a tree that has a TPO, you can be fined £20,000. If you work on a tree without permission, and you damage it (but don’t destroy it), you can still be fined up to £2,500.
Trees on council land
Trees owned by us or growing on our land are protected. If you want to work on these trees, we must agree to the work first. If we agree it, one of our tree-maintenance contractors must do the work.
Trees in conservation areas
If you want to cut down or work on a tree in a conservation area, you will need to send us an application at least six weeks before you start the work. This is so that we have the chance to make a TPO if necessary.
All trees in conservation areas are protected if they have a stem of more than 7.5cm wide and stand more than 1.5 metres high.
How we make tree preservation orders
For information about how councils make TPOs, go to the Government's website.
Applying to work on a tree
If you want to work on a tree and it has a TPO, or if you want to work on a tree in a conservation area, you must ask us for permission.
Apply for permission online using the Planning Portal. You will need to log on or register to set up the application. Or you can download the application form (PDF) and send it to us with your submission (all plans and documents) at:
First Floor West Wing
1000 Dockside Road
You will also need to send us an electronic copy of your submission as well. You can send it to us on a CD or email it to us at Planning.Application@newham.gov.uk. Make sure the files are in PDF format (with the measuring tool switched on) and each file is no bigger than 10MB. Break up large documents into separate files.
If you want to work on a tree that is owned by us, or you want general advice about trees, contact the arbori-cultural inspector on 020 8430 2000.