Trees and Hedges

Policy EM3 – Soft Landscaping

Tree lined avenues and the abundant tree coverage throughout the parks and open space define the town’s character. Protecting, preserving and replacing the existing trees are essential in retaining Welwyn Garden City’s green vistas and gardens.

Hedgerows lining the front of residential streets are key elements of these green principles where individual homes help contribute to the town’s character. 

Consent is required for the removal or works to any trees taller than 4.5m (15ft in height). An application must be made to an Estate Management officer to undertake works or removal; this is usually linked with the creation of hardstanding areas. 

Consent is also required for the removal of any existing hedgerows to a property within the Estate Management area. Consent is rarely given for the complete removal of hedgerows or trees without sound justification.  Replacement planting is likely to be required if a sound justification is provided. An application would not be required for hedge trimming.

Consent is also required for the planting of a hedgerow to ensure suitable species, location and amenity are upheld.  Typically species should be that of a compact form and single species would be acceptable.  Privet, Beech, Hornbeam or Yew.

A justifiable cause for tree and hedgerow removal is required within all Estate Management applications.

In the approval for hedgerow or tree removal, appropriate replacement or mitigation will be required and agreed with an Estate Management officer.

Suitable levels of protection will be important when undertaking construction works in close proximity to trees. This would include tree locations on the applicant’s land, neighbouring land or within the public highway. Suitable construction methods in accordance with BS 5837:2012 would be appropriate to avoid lasting damage to existing root systems of established trees.  A qualified arboriculturalist would be able to provide suitable guidance on these matters.

It is advised that hedgerows are recommended to be maintained to above 1 meter in height to ensure its contribution to the wider street value and character.

Hedgerow pruning would not require consent unless substantial reductions and works are being undertaken to the hedge which affects the overall character to the wider streetscene. It would be advised to discuss the proposed works with the Estate Management Officer before undertaking works.  

Please note it is advised to seek consent from Welwyn Hatfield’s Landscape and Ecology officers or the Estate Management team prior to undertaking any tree works. Trees can be protected under separate Tree Preservation Orders or Conservation Areas and would require separate consent.

Page updated: 8/04/2019

Make the most of the Estate Management Scheme website, register today

As well as ensuring you are always in the know about future changes and updates to this website, registering with us will enable to you to add and manage bookmarks throughout the site, so your most-used areas of the guide are always easy to find.

Register for updates

© 2024 Copyright Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council.
All rights reserved.