Trees and hedges
We maintain trees and hedges alongside roads and footways to ensure they are not a danger to road users.
Most trees and hedges by the road are not owned by us, but by private landowners. It is the landowners who are responsible for maintaining them. However, we can make sure work is carried out if they present a danger to road users. The owner of the tree or hedge would normally have to pay for the necessary work.
Where trees or hedges are posing a danger to road users by obscuring traffic signs/signals and we own the tree or hedge, we will prune the branches. If the tree or hedge is on private land, we can take legal action to force the owner to remove the danger within 14 days. If the owner does not take action, we may carry out the work and recover costs from the owner.
During the summer we have a programme to cut back trees and hedges which are blocking roads or footways.
Report a problem with trees or hedges
Some trees and hedges have legal protection. Contact your local district council for more information.
Neighbours' trees and hedges
Danger to your property
If a neighbour’s tree is in such a condition that is a danger to your property, please contact your district council. They can serve a notice on the tree owner to make the tree safe within 21 days. If the owner does not take action, the district council may carry out work to make the tree safe and recover costs from the tree owner.
If a neighbour’s tree is blocking your light you cannot force them to cut it down. As long as the tree is safe and is not causing damage, your neighbour is entitled to grow the tree.
If a neighbour's hedge is blocking your light and you wish to take action, you may be able to do so under the Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2003. Please contact your district council for advice.
Overhanging your property
If a neighbour’s tree or hedge is growing over into your property, you cannot make them cut it back. However, you do have the right to remove overgrowing branches yourself, but only back to the common boundary. Any cuttings must be offered back to the tree or hedge owner.
If leaves have blown onto your property from a neighbour’s tree, you cannot expect the tree owner to clean up the leaves or charge them if you do so.