Stephen's Blog

Blog written by Stephen Hayden of Hayden's Arboricultural Consultants
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Following the recent, not unfounded, firestorm in the press about Ash dieback and the potential effect on the nations Ash trees, I feel it is worth raising the issue of other pests and diseases which are now deemed to be epidemic by Dr Joan Webber, Head of Tree Health at the Forestry Commission that should be noted if your own or manage trees. Whilst in my opinion the media frenzy about ash dieback has lead to a lot of miss-information being circulated it has raised the profile of the Tree Pest and Disease in this country and the need for vigilance, structured and well thought out management of any future ‘outbreaks’, and most all clear and planned guidance to both professionals and the public for future tree planting and management.

In a recent interview with the Telegraph Newspaper Dr Webber gave details of those disease she now deemed epidemic within the UK.

Dr Webber said there are now 10 tree diseases that are epidemic:

1) Dutch elm disease arrived in two waves in the 1920s and 1960s and destroyed most of the country’s elm trees. The second, more lethal pathogen, is still at large in the countryside killing off mature trees.

2) Alder phytophthora is killing alders along our riversides. Up to a quarter of alders are already infected by the disease or dead.
3) Red band needle blight or dothistroma needle blight is a significant threat to conifer plantations. It was first found in Corsican pine the 1950s in East Anglia but is now across the country and threatening the native Scots pine.
4) Sudden oak death or phytophthora ramorum is widespread across south-west England, Wales and south-west Scotland. Despite the name, it affects mostly Japanese larch trees. Already more than four million have been felled to try and stop the spread of the disease.
5) Bleeding canker is now found in half the country’s Horse Chestnut or conker trees, according to the Forestry Commission. It will weaken the tree until it dies or has to be felled for health and safety reasons.
6) Phytophthora lateralis threatens to wipe out Lawson cypress, a popular ornamental tree in many stately homes. It has killed trees in western Scotland, Yorkshire, the South West and Wales.
7) Phytophthora austrocedrae kills native juniper, a tree that conservationists are trying to re-establish after going extinct in many areas. The disease has killed juniper in the Lake District and Scotland.
8) Chestnut leaf miner is a moth that is now in most Horse Chestnut trees. Although it does not necessarily kill the tree it will weaken it and can kill in combination with bleeding canker. It also makes conkers smaller.
9) Phytophthora pseudosyringae kills the southern beech tree. Although the tree is not widespread in the UK it was hoped it could spread as the climate becomes warmer but is in danger of being wiped out by this disease.
10) Ash dieback, known as Chalara fraxinea, is now in 222 sites around the UK. In other countries is has infected 90 per cent of ash trees and could wipe out a huge proportion of Britain’s 92 million ash trees.
Over and above these Dr Webber said there are other diseases that may not be epidemic but are more of a “slow burn”, killing off species slowly.
Perhaps the most worrying are Acute Oak Death, that kills oaks quickly and Chronic Oak Death, that kills the trees most slowly. Both diseases are thought to be made worse by environmental stress and are slowly spreading from the Midlands and South East across Britain. They attack the roots and eventually kill the tree.
Dr Webber said there are a number of relatively new diseases, where it is not clear how they will affect a species.
Chestnut blight, that has killed off the species in the US and Europe, has been found in a number of sites in Britain recently and could affect our sweet chestnuts.
Phytophthora kernoviae kills beech trees, although it is hoped the disease can be controlled by culling the host species rhododendron. It also affects bilberries and other native heathland plants.
A number of insects are also weakening trees.
The oak processionary moth that causes caterpillars with toxic hairs to fall from trees is widespread in oak trees in London.
The spruce bark beetle, threatens our most commercial tree species, but can be controlled by putting down another species of beetle that kills the pest. The endemic pine weevil and pine lappet moth are also attacking conifer plantations.
The exotic Asian longhorn beetle, that threatens a number of species including willow, birch and poplar, was recently found in Kent but the Forestry Commission hope to eradicate the insect.
Dr Webber said a number of worrying diseases are on the horizon.
Plane wilt, that is widespread in France, would seriously compromise plane trees so popular in cities including London. Oak wilt is also a threat. Sweet chestnut gall is another threat to this species.
Citrus long-horn beetle has already been intercepted a number of times at border posts and poses a serious threat to a number of species. The 8-toothed European Spruce Bark Beetle and spruce budworm are more threats to conifer plantations. Brown Spot needle blight, pine pitch canker and pine wilt also threaten conifers.
The emerald ash borer and bronze birch borer are at present causing great concern in the US.
Stephen Hayden
Managing Director at Hayden's Arboricultural Consultants
stephen@treesurveys.co.uk
Telephone: 01264 765391
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As Christmas sneaks up on us again, so the planning deadlines and the associated rush these cause, prior to everyone disappearing for the Christmas and New Year’s festivities. Given this and the potential delay that a late request from the LPA for a Tree Survey/Arboricultural Impact Assessment and Method Statement can cause, we at Hayden’s suggest that you pre-empt the request and associated delay. To this end we are offering a free assessment of you planning proposal to see whether we feel the LPA will require a Tree Survey in support of your application.

As we at Hayden’s Arboricultural Consultants have undertaken extensive interviews with the majority of the Local Planning Authority Trees Officers on a one to one basis over the last year, together with fact that we presently act as in house consultants in the Broads Authority Development & Planning Department we are uniquely qualified and ideally positioned to provide this initial advice at no cost to you or your clients.

The benefits of this will be that neither you or your clients will be wrong footed by the late request for a Tree Survey, in line with BS5837:2012 and the associated delay/costs this may create.

For a chat about how we can help you please call 01284 765391 or email info@treesurveys.co.uk before it’s too late.
All the best
Stephen Hayden
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Given the increasing pressures for sustainable drainage solutions on sites, we at Hayden’s work closely with engineers, drainage suppliers, clients and Local Planning Authorities (LPA) to come up with innovative solutions for drainage close to trees.

One such project which required a great deal of input on our behalf was Blue Mountains, Wantage. Hayden’s were commissioned to undertake the initial Tree Survey and Tree Constraints Plan (TCP) and then worked with the client’s architects and designers to  produce a workable site layout and services layout, retaining as many of the existing trees as possible, whilst enabling an acceptable level of development for the client and LPA.

Whilst the layout of the site was aided by the presence of existing buildings near to trees, the services provided an altogether different challenge; the size and proximity of the trees to be retained severely restricted the space available for soakaways and water attenuation on site.

However working with the engineers and the drainage suppliers (Wavin) we were able to design an innovative system of linked soakaways between trees, outside the Root Protection Areas (RPAs) required, with the supervision of the Arboricultural Consultant and the correct tree root protection (GreenTek).

Whilst the installation of these required a little more attention to detail by the ground work contractors, we managed to install the required drainage in close proximity to trees without detriment to either the trees roots or associated health and safety.

The drawing on below shows the line of drainage in relation to the retained trees, the photo below shows the finished result.
The Local Planning Authority Officer was particularly pleased with the project and it is now used as an example of best practice for development works in close proximity to trees within the district.

At Hayden’s we relish the chance to work with allied professions to come up with innovative solutions to problems raised by development in close proximity to trees.

If you would like us look at any project where you feel we may be of some assistance, or would just like to discuss a particular issue relating to trees in close proximity to development, please do not hesitate to contact us.  

Tel:     01284 765391
Email: info@treesurveys.co.uk

Drawing showing the Sustainable Drainage Solution produced for a project in Wantage

A photograph of where the Sustainable Drainage Solution was installed in Wantage
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Below is the written statement about Ash Tree Dieback written by Owen Paterson The Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

1. Newly-planted diseased trees and diseased trees in nurseries will be traced and destroyed, as once young trees are infected they succumb quickly.

2. Mature trees will not currently be removed, as they are valuable to wildlife, take longer to die and can help us learn more about genetic strains that might be resistant to the disease. Infection does not occur directly from tree to tree.

3. Better understanding of the disease will be built through research and surveys, which will look not only for diseased trees but for those that show signs of resistance to Chalara, to help identify genetic strains resistant to the disease.

4. The search for the disease will include trees in towns and cities as well as the countryside, building partnerships with a range of organisations beyond Government.

5. Foresters, land managers, environmental groups and the public will be informed about how to identify diseased trees and those likely to be resistant to the disease, and know what to do if they find a diseased tree.

For now, the main control measure is the ban on imports and movements. Infection in mature trees is not a threat at this time of year as they are not producing spores. The main risk to manage between now and the spring is the movement of infected ash leaf litter for which we have already provided advice to the public, local authorities and landowners.

By the end of November I will publish a more detailed control plan which delivers our objectives for tackling Chalara by considering the following:

• Designating protected zones, to free up trade in ash from areas free of the disease through authorising businesses to issue “plant passports”.

• Establishing a tree health early warning network to provide advice, screening and initial diagnostics.

• Developing advice on protecting saplings and responding rapidly if the disease is found.

• Developing advice on sustainable management of mature trees on sites affected by Chalara.

• What additional equipment is needed to diagnose tree disease.

• Improved biosecurity including import controls; and

• More public engagement in helping diagnose and tackle disease through “citizen science” including an OPAL (Open Air Laboratories) citizen science project.

For the longer term, I am also considering our strategic approach to the threat of disease to our plants and trees in the light of experience of responding to Chalara. In early October, I asked Professor Ian Boyd to convene an expert Task Force on Tree Health and Plant Biosecurity. I am prepared to consider radical proposals to protect the woodland environment and I look forward to seeing his interim proposals at the end of November. I will update the House when I have received that report

Full statement at

http://www.defra.gov.uk/news/2012/11/09/wms-ash/

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Given all the hype and panic over the Ash Dieback Fungus – Chalara fraxine,. I feel that we need to get not only the correct information, but the most pragmatic advice, out to our clients with regards the disease. Given the knee jerk reaction of the government and the various, in our opinion, silly and unworkable, dictats with regards washing family, dogs and children following visits to woodlands please find below (and also attached) a summary of the latest scientific information available, produced by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, which gives a balanced and accurate summary of the information available at present with regards the fungus.
CHALARA FRAXINEA – KEY SCIENTIFIC FACTS
Issued By – Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Background
Ash dieback is a disease of ash trees caused by the fungus Chalara fraxinea (1). The disease causes leaf loss and crown dieback in affected trees and it may lead to tree death. Ash trees suffering from symptoms likely to be caused by Chalara fraxinea (C. fraxinea) are increasingly being found across Europe. These have included forest trees, trees in urban areas and also young trees in nurseries. C. fraxinea is a quarantine pest under national emergency measures.
Confidence ratings as used below: High – supported by experimental evidence and repeated observations which have been published in the peer-reviewed scientific literature. Moderate – supported by long-term observation or multiple observations from reputable sources that come to the same conclusion, or by comparative analysis of related species. Low – supported by a few observations or many observations from reputable sources that are not suggesting a consistent pattern, or an accumulation of anecdotal evidence that suggests a consistent pattern.
What is Chalara dieback of ash?
1. Chalara dieback of ash is a disease of ash trees caused by the fungus Chalara fraxinea (Kowalski, 2006). The disease cause s loss of leaves, dieback of the crown of the tree and can lead to tree death (Kowalski and Holdenrieder, 2009). (High confidence)
2. C. fraxinea has infected many species of ash but with differing intensities (Forest Research, 2012). As some ash species show very few symptoms after infection, they may act as undetected carriers. There is evidence of low susceptibility to disease in some Asian ash trees (Drenkhan and Hanso, 2010 ). (Moderate confidence)
3. Common ash (Fraxinus excelsior) is the most severely affected species . Young trees are particularly vulnerable to C. fraxinea and succumb to disease rapidly. (Kowalski, 2006; Forest Research, 2012). (High confidence)
4. Ash dieback has seriously affected a high percentage of ash trees in continental Europe (Forest Research, 2012; Bakys et al., 2009; Engesser et al., 2009; Halmschlager and Kirisits, 2008; Ioos et al., 2009; Kowalski and Holdenrieder , 2008; Lygis et al., 2005; Ogris et al., 2010; Szabo, 2009; Talgo et al., 2009), most notably in Scandinavia (including Denmark, which has an estimated 90 per cent of ash trees infected) and Baltic States. (High confidence)
5. There is no evidence that C. fraxinea can spread to tree species other than ash or that it is harmful to the health of people or animals. (High confidence)
How does infection happen?
(1) Chalara fraxinea is the asexual form (anamorph) of Hymenoscyphus pseudoalbidus, responsible for the current ash dieback epidemic in Europe (Kowalski, 2006; Queloz et al., 2010). For ease of reference, Chalara fraxinea is used as the common term in this document.
1. Infection is via spores from fruit bodies on leaf litter. Spore production (in fruit bodies) occurs on infected fallen leaves and shoot material in the growing season after infection; trees are likely to need a high dose of spores to become infected (Timmermann et al., 2011). (High confidence)
2. C. fraxinea infection starts primarily on leaves and is progressive over time with dieback and stem lesions usually manifesting in the next growing season . Leaf symptoms can be detected within two months of infection (experience from Denmark). (Moderate confidence)
3. C. fraxinea causes infection from June – October, mainly in July – August (Timmermann et al., 2011; Kirisits and Cech, 2009; Kowalski and Holdenreider, 2009) . Moist conditions favour production of the fruiting bodies. (High confidence)
How is infection likely to spread?
1. Spores are produced on Chalara fruit bodies formed on fallen leaves and shoots the year following infection. Natural spread is by wind-blown spores (ascospores) from these fruiting bodies (Kowalski, 2006; Kirisits et al.2009; Kowalski and Holdenrieder, 2009; Queloz et al., 2010). (High confidence)
2. Wind-blown spores may be dispersed up to 20-30 kilometres (Solheim, et al., 2011). Longer distance spread occurs via infected plants or potentially via wood products (Husson et al, 2012; EPPO, 2010; Prokrym and Neeley, 2009) . (High confidence on wind dispersal; Moderate confidence on untreated wood products ).
3. There is low probability of dispersal on clothing and footwear or via animals and birds. (High confidence). Transmission by routes other than wind and planting material are likely to pose a comparatively low risk but the risk cannot be ruled out.
4. C. Fraxinea is found in seeds (Cleary M., et al. 2012) this is reflected in the legislation which restricts the movement of plants and seeds.
5. There is lower risk of C. fraxinea spreading over the winter since there is now a ban on ash imports into the UK, restrictions on plant movements through Statuto ry Plant Health Notices and as spore production is not expected to resume until June 2013. (High confidence)
6. Scientific advice from Norway suggests a disease progression rate of up to 30 km per year once C. fraxinea is established (Solheim, 2009; Solheim, et al., 2011). (High confidence)
What are the consequences of infection for ash tree health ?
1. Trees cannot recover from infection but larger trees can survive infection for a considerable length of time and some may not die (current experience from Denmark). (High confidence)
2. The impact of C. fraxinea infection depends on tree age, location, weather conditions and co-presence of honey fungus (Armillaria) or other secondary pathogenic / opportunistic organisms. Trees in forests are more susceptible because of the greater prevalence of honey fungus. Timber trees are generally felled before they are killed by honey fungus.
Trees under 10 years of age are likely to die from C. fraxinea in 2-10 years.
Trees under 40 years old will die in 3-5 years if also infected with honey fungus, and likely more rapidly if the tree is already debilitated.
For mature trees over 40 years, there is no direct evidence of tree deaths just from C. fraxinea to date but there is little comprehensive survey data from Europe on which to base firm conclusions. (Moderate confidence )
Further evidencewould be helpful to strengthen the development of management options to minimise the environmental, economic and social impacts of Chalara fraxinea, including:
Improving detection of Chalara. Improving knowledge of the aetiology, pathology and epidemiology of Chalara. Understanding the nature and scale of the environmental, economic and social impacts of Chalara. Assessing how to mitigate the risks of Chalara. Assessing how to adapt to the presence of Chalara.
References: - See attached document at bottom of email.

Quite clearly the fungus is of great concern and I do not want to undermine the importance or severity of the potential problems that it may cause, but we need to keep a level head and deal with the facts not media hype.

To help further below is a link to video link giving details of the Life Cycle and Symptoms of the Fungus.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y1GpufLkBto&feature=plcp
I hope this is of some assistance should you wish to discuss any of the above please do not hesitate to contact us.
Stephen Hayden
stephen@treesurveys.co.uk
01284 765391
To see the above information as a PDF please follow the link below:
Ash_Dieback_(Chalara_faxinea)_Key_Scientific_Facts.pdf
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We are looking to expand the team with an experienced Arboriculturist.

Working alongside architects, planners, engineers and ecologists, you will be encouraged to use and develop your skills to provide expert arboricultural advice and services to a range of clients.

The ideal Arboricultural Consultant will have experience of undertaking field based surveys and producing reports in accordance with BS5837. You will also have experience in the interpretation of topographic survey data, the production of AIA and AMS and a thorough understanding and application of VTA principles.

The Arboricultural Consultant role will involve carrying out desktop studies for arboricultural statute controls and constraints, and undertaking site surveys in accordance with BS5837. In this role, the majority of your time will be spent working on project objectives. You will be required to liaise with a number of clients and wider project teams, and reporting to the Arboriculture Manager.
This opportunity is offered alongside a competitive salary and a benefits scheme.
Interested? For an initial, non-committal discussion about this vacancy, please do not hesitate to call Stephen Hayden or David Carmichael on 012384 765391.
Alternatively you can email your CV and we’ll call you back. Emails to: info@treesurveys.co.uk
Personal Specifications
Essential
Minimum QCF (Qualifications and Credit Framework) Level 3 qualification in Arboriculture (e.g. Technicians Certificate or HNC in Arboriculture)
Clean driving license and own vehicle
Good tree identification
Good knowledge of tree inspection
Good pest and disease identification
Excellent communication, IT and organisational skills
Desirable
Previous Local Planning Authority experience
Lantra Professional Tree Inspector
Experience of contract management
Experience of practical arboriculture
Arboriculture and Bats
Keen interest in Ecology
Member of the Arboricultural Association and/ or International Society of Arboriculture
Working knowledge of GIS and CAD
Stephen Hayden
Managing Director
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BS 5837:2012 “Trees in Relation to Design, Demolition and Construction - Recommendations" - An insider’s guide to the changes

Introduction

For the last seven years, BS 5837:2005 “Trees in Relation to Construction” has operated as the primary document guiding the process of determining tree related planning applications from concept through to completion. This publication has now been superseded by an updated and renamed version BS 5837:2012 “Trees in Relation to Design, Demolition and Construction - Recommendations” which takes effect from 30 April 2012.

Overall Review

The authors of BS 5837:2012 describe the document in its Foreword as “a full revision of the standard” and there are significant differences particularly in the process control and categorisation. There is also a greater emphasis on the importance of planting and post development monitoring. However, many of the fundamental items (e.g. the importance of Root Protection Areas - RPA) remain largely unchanged from BS 5837:2005.
Summary of Changes
1 The most significant alteration is that of process control. In BS 5837:2005 full details of the Arboricultural Method Statement (AMS) were obligatory at the application stage. This is not now the case. BS 5837:2012 sates that only “heads of terms” are necessary prior to application, with full details being required by condition after approval. This brings the standard in line with the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) Work Stages Plan and follows the following procedure:
• feasibility and planning,
• planning permission,
• detailed/technical design,
• implementation and aftercare.
The pre-consent work includes the tree survey, identifying design constraints, identifying trees for retention and removal, and production of a (draft) tree protection plan.
2 There are a number of minor changes to the initial tree survey.
• Category “R” trees have been replaced with Category “U”, though the assessment designation is essentially the same.
• The RPA method of measurement and calculation has changed for multi stem trees.
• Life expectancy nomenclature has been adjusted.
• Additional data is advised for assessment (e.g. height and aspect of lowest branch).
• Increased emphasis on ensuring trees on adjacent land are considered.
• The 20% RPA offset for open-grown trees has been removed, with the area usually plotted as a circle. Modified RPA may be employed, but only when justifiable on defendable arboricultural grounds.
• The survey is now classed as part of the feasibility study.
3 BS 5837:2005 had standard tree protection fencing. This has been amended in BS 5837:2012 to allow a more varied, site specific approach, though standard details are still provided as examples. In simple terms the fencing (including ground protection) must be “fit for purpose”.
4 An auditable scheme of site monitoring must be provided to ensure that the approved AMS is complied with during the construction process.
5 There is more emphasis on new trees and their role and importance within a development, in particular their significance in climate change remediation. BS 5837:2012 contains much more information and guidance on incorporating new planting in designs. This includes a requirement to demonstrate that newly planted trees will be maintained for a minimum agreed period.
Practical Implications
As a result of the changes brought in by BS 5837:2012, planning applications involving trees will no longer require extensive detailing, though it remains essential that any arboricultural solutions proposed in the “heads of terms” can be delivered in compliance with post consent conditions. This means that whilst the volume of data submitted will be less, Arboriculturalists must be just as assiduous in assessing development proposals as they were with BS 5837:2005. This will continue to involve working with Architects and Developers pre application to resolve or mitigate any tree related issues which may prevent the achievement of an acceptable scheme.
Post planning permission, the Arboriculturalist will be required to produce a fully detailed AMS which addresses all of the originally listed “heads of terms”.
At implementation, the Arboriculturalist will undertake a site monitoring programme to ensure the AMS is complied with, acting as liaison between the developer and the Local Authority
Conclusion
The change of procedure standardises arboricultural matters with other issues dealt with by Architects in the planning process. It requires a lesser level of documentation (but not of confidence) to be submitted for planning applications, but necessitates a greater input from Arboriculturalists post planning permission than has previously been the case.
Given these changes we at Hayden’s will be able to reduce our fees to ensure that, should in the unfortunate case you not be successful in getting Planning Permission, you have not paid for the detailed Arboricultural Method Statement previous supplied as standard.
Should you wish to discuss any of the above or have any sites you would like us to look at, please do not hesitate to contact us on 01284 765391 or email info@treesurveys.co.uk
For further details of our services please visit WWW.TREESURVEYS.CO.UK
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Despite the present wet weather, the following advice has been issued by The Tree Advice Trust with regards the effects of drought on trees and provides useful guidelines for the management of trees during periods of drought. If you have any queries with regards the advice please do not hesitate to contact me on stephen@treesurveys.co.uk .

Drought Orders and water restrictions are being predicted particularly in the east and south east of Britain. What will be the impact on trees and shrubs and what can we do to focus the use of water that is available?

Trees and shrubs planted during the 2011/2012 winter planting period will be most vulnerable and it is those plants that priority for scarce resources should be directed. Trees and shrubs that have been in the ground for at least one growing season should have developed some roots into the surrounding soil and so should be able to source sufficient water from the soil at least to meet their needs for survival. If these plants are able to flush, and the soil is generally moist at this time of the year, they should be able to survive. In a prolonged drought trees will autumn early (e.g. Birch), or reduce their need for water using other mechanisms (e.g. Oak).

Many newly planted trees are watered prescriptively, for example contracts frequently state ‘water once a week during the growing season’. This takes no account of soil type, whether there has been rainfall, and how much, between the watering events. The result can be waterlogging, root death and even tree death!
Another common feature of irrigating recently planted trees is too little water being applied. Where an irrigation event fails to wet the soil around all of the roots, surface rooting can be induced. This may be insignificant where the ground is adequately mulched and rainfall supplements the applied water. If a tree relies on surface roots and then an irrigation visit is delayed or missed and the weather is hot and dry then those surface roots are the first to experience drought. In such cases any deeper roots that are present may not be able to develop sufficiently quickly to sustain the tree, even if moisture is available to them!

Water stress will develop within a plant, in a prolonged dry spell, but this can be accommodated in the plant by restricting evapo-transpiration (e.g. by closing stomata). In extremis, if the water stress in a tree persists and develops it can eventually lead to the stressed plant’s death – but that alone is a very rare cause of tree death.

So how can scarce water resources be used effectively?

Once the volume of the soil surrounding the roots is moist there should be no need for further irrigation until there have been five consecutive days without measurable rainfall. Then sufficient water should be applied to rewet the whole volume of soil in contact with the roots. If during a period of five days there is measurable rainfall then the day count should be restarted.
Unfortunately simply applying water to the edges of the root-ball of a ball and burlap or container grown tree, or worse to the backfill and surrounding soil will not guarantee that the soil around the roots is wetted. Once dry some soils and composts are difficult to rewet which means that during irrigation a positive effort is needed to direct the irrigation water into the root-ball/container compost so that it has to wet that medium as well as the surrounding backfill soil!

Derek Patch, Arboricultural Advisory Information Service.

WWW.TREESURVEYS.CO.UK
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The new BS5837:2012 Trees in relation to design, demolition and construction – Recommendations, has now been published and comes into force on the 30th April 2012. We are undertaking a full review of the revised standard and will be making any necessary changes to our report format over the next few weeks to ensure compliance. We will issue a review of the document and the changes we have made to ensure that all clients are aware of the changes and any necessary implication this may have on future planning application.

Whilst initially it appears that there are many changes to the previous BS5837:2005 we at Hayden’s do appear to be addressing the majority of these in our existing report formats. However we will be revising our format to ensure compliance with the new BS5837:2012 by the 30th April 2012. As a starter the new Standard provides the following advice on the dealing with trees as part of a planning application which we feel provides a clear and succinct protocol for the commissioning of the tree advice as part of future planning applications.

Annex B Trees and the planning system

Under the UK planning system, local authorities have a statutory duty to consider the protection and planting of trees when granting planning permission for proposed development. The potential effect of development on trees, whether statutorily protected (e.g. by a tree preservation order or by their inclusion within a conservation area) or not, is a material consideration that is taken into account in dealing with planning applications. Where trees are statutorily protected, it is important to contact the local planning authority and follow the appropriate procedures before undertaking any works that might affect the protected trees.
The nature and level of detail of information required to enable a local planning authority to properly consider the implications and effects of development proposals varies between stages and in relation to what is proposed. Table B.1 provides advice to both developers and local authorities on an appropriate amount of information. The term ‘minimum detail’ is intended to reflect information that local authorities are expected to seek, whilst the term ‘additional information’ identifies further details that might reasonably be sought, especially where any construction is proposed within the RPA.
As stated above this is just a starter, we will issue further advice as part of a comprehensive review of the standard.
I trust this is of some assistance should you wish to discus and of the above or require further details of the implications of the revised standard BS 5837:2012 please do not hesitate to contact us.
Stephen Hayden
Principal Consultant
Telephone: 01284 765391
Email: info@treesurveys.co.uk
Web: www.treesurveys.co.uk
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You may be forgiven for thinking that once you’ve employed a tree surgeon to fell that nasty dead tree at the rear of the garden you have fulfilled your duty of care in making safe a dangerous tree. Unfortunately there is more to employing a tree surgeon than just pointing at said tree and asking them to make it safe.

Should a branch be dropped while the tree is being dismantled and it falls through your greenhouse, wiping out next season’s crop of tomatoes, it would undoubtedly be a travesty for the salad bowl but a quick chat with the tree surgeon and an exchange of insurance details should ensure Sungold’s or Gardener’s Delights are back on the table soon enough. If, however, the branch falls on to a car in the lane behind your garden the Health and Safety Executive may want to discuss the incident with both the tree surgeon and yourself.

This is because under the “Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 Act” you, as client, need to satisfy yourself that the contractors you employ are competent (i.e. they have sufficient skills and knowledge) to do the job safely and without risks to health and safely. The degree of competence required will depend on the work to be undertaken (Health & Safety Executive publication “Use of Contractors – A Joint Responsibility”). In practice this means employing a reputable company who provide truly objective advice with regards the level of tree work required together with the necessary equipment to undertake work safely while protecting the public; all of this backed up with the appropriate Risk Assessments and Method Statements and insurance; not employing a “man with a van” who will be off like a whippet at the first sniff of trouble.

Whilst all this can seem overwhelming thankfully help is at hand. At Hayden’s we can offer a comprehensive project management package ensuring all aspects of risk management are undertaken to the highest of standards. We can undertake the initial objective assessment of the trees and recommend remedial works; obtain quotations and appoint a tree contractor through to assessing Risk Assessments / Method Statements prior to work being undertaken and checking the quality of the final works.
Our consultants, supported by the administrative team, have a wealth of experience in this field, having been Local Authority Trees Officers, managing large tree stocks and Arboricultural contracts over the last 25 years. Dealing with tree surgeons and the associated paperwork is second nature. As a client, you can be assured that you will receive the highest quality tree work in a safe, timely and cost-effective manner.
If you are concerned about your trees, be it within your own property or as part of larger project, do not hesitate to contact us for free advice on the best way forward for both you and the trees.
EMAIL: INFO@TREESURVEYS.CO.UK
TEL: 01284 765391
WWW.TREESURVEYS.CO.UK
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