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This is an Order made by the Local Planning Authority. It is an offence cut down, prune, uproot, wilfully damage or wilfully destroy a tree covered by a Tree Preservation Order (TPO) without the written permission of the Council. This applies to roots as well as the above ground parts of the tree. A TPO can protect any species of tree but does not apply to shrubs.

How do I find out if a tree is protected?

The Council’s Tree Officer can advise you which trees are protected. Simply phone 01633 644962/01633 644880 or email

How to request a TPO

The main criteria for placing a TPO on a tree is its value in the landscape and if that landscape value would be diminished if the tree were to be removed. Usually the tree must be in good health and visible to the general public. Anyone can request a Tree Preservation Order to be made, regardless of whose land the tree is situated upon.

Making a tree preservation order 

A new tree preservation order is made on a provisional basis, for a period of six months. Before the six-month period expires (during which time the tree remains fully protected) we must decide either to confirm the order i.e. make it permanent; confirm the order with modifications e.g. remove certain trees or not confirm the order.

Who is informed when an order is made?

We will either write to the landowner via registered mail enclosing a copy of the order or serve it by hand. Others to whom we have a legal duty to serve the order are only those properties with boundaries which adjoin the land to which the order relates.

How can I object to or support an order? 

Any comments must be made in writing to the Local Planning Authority either by email or letter within 28 days of the order being served. We will take all comments into account when deciding whether to confirm the order. All interested parties will be notified.

Carrying out works to protected trees

Formal application must be made to the local planning authority before pruning or felling a tree. From time to time trees may require maintenance.  An application form is available on request, or you can download it here. Guidance notes are also available here.

To support your application we recommend that you obtain professional advice.

Can I do the work myself?

Yes, however the Council imposes a condition when granting consent that all tree works must be carried out in accordance with industry best practice. In the case of tree works this means that tree pruning must be done in accordance with British Standard 3998 (2010) Tree Work â€“ Recommendations. 

Does the Council consult the public when an application is made?

No. There is no legal requirement for us to do so. We do however inform your town or community council and your local county councillor when applications are received.

All planning applications are open for inspection in the planning register.

What if I prune my tree without first obtaining consent?

You could be fined up to £20,000 in a Magistrate’s Court if you cut down, uproot, wilfully destroy a tree, or wilfully damage or prune a protected tree in a manner likely to destroy it. Fines can be considerably higher if you are prosecuted in the Crown Court.

The court will take into account any actual or likely financial benefit resulting from the offence. For example, if you consider the tree or trees may be to the detriment of an intended application for planning permission and remove them before the Council can properly consider the matter.

You could be fined up to £2,500 for other offences that do not lead to the destruction of a tree e.g. removing a branch. You will be required to replant any tree that has been destroyed.

Trees in Conservation Areas

Trees that are not covered by a TPO but are situated in one of Monmouthshire’s many conservation areas are also protected. An offence of carrying out unauthorised tree works in a conservation area carries the same penalties as that of a TPO. 

Under section 211 of the Act, anyone proposing to cut down or carry out work on a tree in a conservation area is required to give the Local Planning Authority (LPA) six weeks’ prior notice in writing (a ‘Section 211 notice’). The purpose of this requirement is to give the LPA an opportunity to consider whether a TPO should be made in respect of the tree(s). For more information on carrying out works in a conservation area please contact or 01633 644880. 

Submitting a notice to the LPA

Notices of the intent to carry out work to trees in a conservation area may be submitted on the same form as that used for applying for work to a tree with a TPO, the link to which is found above. Simply tick the Conservation Area box at Section 5 on the form then describe the work you intend to carry out. Please note: the LPA cannot make decisions if your submission is too vague e.g. stating you intend merely to prune or lop your tree(s). It may be helpful for you to engage a tree work specialist to submit the form on your behalf as insufficient or vague information will not normally be considered.

form to notify of works is available with guidance notes.