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Trees & Hedges

Tree Protection

It is an offence to carry out work to a protected tree, or remove it, without the approval of the Council.  If you do, you could be prosecuted and fined.  If a tree has been removed or destroyed, you may also be required to plant a replacement.

Trees and woodland that make an important contribution to the local landscape can be protected in two ways:

  • By tree preservation order
  • Being located in a Conservation Area

Tree Preservation Orders (TPO)
There are 105 TPOs in Kettering Borough.

A TPO is an order made to protect certain trees because of their intrinsic beauty, the special contribution they make to the landscape or street scene, or because of some other special quality, such as rarity or historic significance.

A TPO may cover any type of tree including single, group, woodland or hedgerow trees. The order will specify the location and species covered and the properties affected.

Trees in a Conservation Area
Trees usually make an important contribution to the character of a Conservation Area and are also protected if their stem diameter is 75mm or more when measured at 1.5m above ground level.  If you wish to prune or cut down a tree in a Conservation Area, notice must be given in writing to the Council six weeks in advance.  The work may not start during that period without permission.

Dead or Dangerous Trees
Work to a tree, or part of a tree, which is dead or dangerous does not require the Council's permission.   However, if you are proposing to carry out such work, you should first notify us and, except in an emergency, allow five working days for the Council to satisfy itself that the work is exempt.

If the Council agrees that the work does not require an application for consent this does not mean it is stating that no other regulations apply. For example, Natural England must be consulted if the tree is known to support a bat roost.

Planning Practice Guidance on the “GOV.UK” website provides further information: