Tree surveys for planning applications should follow the guidance provided in British Standard 5837:Trees in relation to design, demolition and construction – Recommendations, known in short as BS5837.
The full British Standard methodology consists of a number of steps:
A tree survey records the location of each tree along with its size and an assessment of its quality. In particular the life expectancy of each tree is assessed so that those trees that can realistically be expected to provide long lasting benefits can be identified.
A tree constraints plan plots the constraints, in terms of ground area, that the current tree might require if it were to be retained. Both above (i.e. branches) and below ground (roots) constraints are considered. Assessing the space required by branches is relatively straight forward whilst below ground constraints may require greater expertise. Each tree is normally assigned a root protection area.
An arboricultural impact assessment assesses the particular impact of any particular design based on the footprint(s) of the proposed building(s) and the requirements for demolition and building such as the storage of building materials, machinery access, service runs and scaffolding requirements.
Where building works are likely to be in close proximity to important trees a method statement may be required by the Council both to reassure the Council planning officers but also to inform building site practices. Implementation of the method statement under arboricultural supervision may be conditioned as part of planning permission by some Councils.
A tree protection plan showing the location of proposed protective fences around retained trees and other measures such as ground protection.
Arboricultural site supervision is increasingly the norm, allowing problems to be identified before they occur and building works to proceed without interruption. We can provide such supervision on a cost effective basis
Duramen can provide advice on trees to support all stages of planning applications, including planning appeals and has experience of successful applications with Councils throughout South East England.