Tree Survey for Planning

Why Do I Need a Tree Survey For Planning?

If you are applying for planning permission, and trees are present near to the proposed development area, a specific tree survey for planning (or Arboricultural Impact Assessment) will generally be requested by the local planning authority. The reason for this is to assess the level of impact construction activity is likely to have on nearby trees. The local planning authority will generally stipulate that this tree report for planning purposes must be undertaken following the relevant British Standard for tree surveys and construction activity (BS5837:2012 Trees in relation to design, demolition and construction).

What Does a Tree Survey For Planning Involve?

The first part of the process is to undertake a data-gathering site survey. The tree survey will record all of the relevant trees within and adjacent to the development site that may be affected by construction activity. Our tree survey for planning report assesses tree quality and assigns each tree or group of trees a retention category. Those trees of poor quality, such as those with serious structural defects or dead trees are recommended for removal. The remaining trees shall be assigned a retention category and considered for retention based on their quality. Each retained tree or group of trees will be plotted on a Tree Constraints Plan, showing Root Protection Areas. For the second part of the tree survey for planning process, where the proposed layout of a site is known, the impact on retained trees can be assessed as part of an Arboricultural Impact Assessment. The Arboricultural Impact Assessment incorporates the tree survey information and the proposed layout details to identify which trees will be impacted upon. From this, a Tree Protection Plan can be drawn up showing how the retained trees will be protected throughout the construction phase. The position of protective fencing barriers will be shown on the Tree Protection Plan, together with the location of any ground protection measures.

bs5837 tree protection

How Much Does a Tree Survey For Planning Cost?

An initial fee would be charged for a site visit and a tree location and condition survey. In addition to this, a fee would be added for an Arboricultural Impact Assessment report, which can be submitted for planning. Please note, an Arboricultural Impact Assessment cannot be produced without first undertaking a site survey to record the trees and relevant site features. Our fees are based on the number of trees within/immediately adjacent to a site, the amount of technical input required, and the geographical location of the site.

How Long Does It Take to Produce the Report?

We aim to produce our tree survey for planning reports as soon as possible. Typically, we undertake the initial site survey within 5 working days, with the report issued 3 working days from the survey. If required, we can provide reports within 3 working days on a fast-track basis. If quick timescales are important then please let us know and we will factor this into our quotation.

Useful Information

You may find the following arboricultural information helpful when arranging a tree survey for planning, as both techniques highlight how construction can take place close to retained trees.

Cellweb – Tree root protection system

NJUG – Guidelines for the planning, installation and maintenance of utility apparatus in proximity to trees

Sometimes trees are protected by statutory controls such as Tree Preservation Orders, or they are located within Conservation Areas. If your trees are protected by statutory controls, and you wish to develop the land adjacent, you will almost certainly require a tree survey for planning. You can check if your trees are protected by visiting – Is my tree protected by a Tree Preservation Order?

Godwins Tree Surveys provide expert tree surveys and reports for planning applications to British Standard BS5837. We offer an excellent level of service, professional advice and years of industry experience. Our complete tree survey for planning applications is typically commissioned by architects, planners, developers, property owners or anyone that requires a tree survey to validate a planning application.

If you would like to discuss your tree-related issue, you may contact us free on 0800 030 4045 or you can email us via our CONTACT US page and we will promptly deal with your query.