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Tree preservation orders and conservation areas

The council has a statutory obligation to protect trees that are considered to be an important feature of the local environment by designating them with a Tree Preservation Order (TPO). A TPO can include individual trees, those in groups or as entire woodlands.

This means that any pruning or other work done to the tree, including its roots, must be agreed by our planning team before any works are carried out.

You can view our Southwark conservation and tree preservation orders (TPO) map.

You can view the Executive Summary of the TPO Review project (PDF, 51kb) conducted by London Borough of Southwark.

Types of trees protected by a TPO

All trees are covered by a TPO, there's no minimum size. Hedgerows may also be protected, however not bushes, shrubs or climbers.

Trees are protected because they contribute to the public's enjoyment of the local environment, or more generally because it is expedient in the interests of amenity. This may be because they're particularly beautiful, are valuable for biodiversity or are a rare species. It may simply be because there are very few trees in the area or because they serve to screen an eyesore. Trees may also be protected as part of landscaping provided by new development.

More information on protected trees can be found on the government website.

Page last updated: 18 July 2023


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