Trees & Waverley’s planning enforcement rules……

Trees & Waverley’s planning enforcement rules……

The Council has received a number of requests for Tree Preservation Orders (TPOs) in the countryside adjoining Cranleigh, due to the current pressure for housing delivery that may potentially endanger old trees and their wildlife. The council says it is therefore taking an equitable approach to such requests. The Council are liaising with larger scale developers and land owners to work towards providing sustainably planned development.  

It is not in the developers’ best interests to undertake pre-emptive felling as this will not expedite planning permission. Those at Waverley do not believe this is a practice associated with potential development sites of the size referred to that have been put forward for consideration. n.b. equitable means fair in law.

Waverley’s website about planning enforcement says:-

“What does not constitute a breach in planning?? ………

The following examples do not breach planning control:

  • vehicles parked on the road or on grass verges (unless this is associated with the unauthorised use of a property) 
  • running a small business from home 
  • clearing land of undergrowth, bushes or trees (not covered by a Tree Preservation Order)….”

However the removal of a hedgerow can be an offence under the Hedgerow Regulations 1997 (unless formal notification etc) but according to Waverley clearance of undergrowth, bushes or trees will not be (unless covered by a TPO) !

The concern about protection of trees, hedgerows and wildlife is not ours alone. Many local residents are greatly concerned. Unless protections are put in place, it takes only minutes to fell a tree (or indeed the trunk of a dead tree which is providing habitats for many species of wildlife and roosting places for birds) or to disturb hedgerows, even if the developers say they are working towards ‘sustainably planned development’. Replacement of old and ancient large trees with small saplings means the wildlife has no where to go whilst the trees are growing.

It has already been pointed out what the terrible results at Little Meadow -down Alfold Road near The One Stop have been. Magnificent large trees were felled and hedgerows ripped out to simply be replaced with ugly and non wildlife friendly boarded fences!!! They maybe easy to maintain but we believe they should NOT be allowed. The previously cited the offence under the Hedgerow Regulations 1997 is in place but

a. we gather that it is not an offence if appropriate notification is given – how do local residents know what is happening in this regard before it happens??? and 

b. how would we know if the developers merely say they are clearing undergrowth, bushes or trees (unless covered by a TPO)

When chain saws start it is too late for us to do anything about it!!!

We need to protect existing trees and hedgerows!!! – please help us to pursuade Waverley planners to reconsider its position re imposition of TPO’s on the numerous trees which should be protected now that the planning application has indeed been made – WA/2018/2074- Cranleigh School’s application opposite Notcutts

” Land Centred Coordinates 504755 139827 East Side, Guildford Road, Surrey- Erection of 40 dwellings (including 14 affordable dwellings) with new vehicular accesses and associated works”

YOU CAN add your thoughts on Waverley’s website http://planning360.waverley.gov.uk/planning/

Berkeley Homes Tree Objection

Berkeley Homes Tree Objection

It appears that Berkeley Homes are not content with the level of tree clearing they have already carried out for the access road to their site in Cranleigh, as they have now applied for the removal of a Tree Preservation Order, which protects the remaining ancient woodland.  We say it’s a shame they got permission to remove so many trees, and how dare they put the remaining beautiful trees at risk!

The TPO was specifically put in place by Waverley Borough Council to prevent further removal of trees, so what possible reason could there be to remove it?  Apparently it would be “a potential significant further barrier to delivery of the development”. Does that sound like they want to chop those trees down too?  According to BH the TPO is unnecessary as there are already “measures in place” to protect the remaining trees.

Berkeley Homes say they are “committed to delivery of the Cranleigh development….to the benefit of the stakeholders!” Well, we knew it wasn’t the existing residents of Cranleigh.

Interestingly the penultimate paragraph in their letter threatens bad working relationship with WBC, delays in building, and additional costs for WBC and Berkeley Homes!  Didn’t they notice the trees were there before?  Ancient woodland doesn’t just appear overnight!

See item 8 OBJECTION TO TREE PRESERVATION ORDER (NO. 01/2017) – TREES ON LAND BETWEEN ALFOLD ROAD AND KNOWLE LANE, CRANLEIGH, via this link: https://modgov.waverley.gov.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=148&MId=1874&Ver=4

 

You can read the full details including the letter from Berkeley Homes and the response from Waverley Borough Council here:

Berkeley Homes Objection to tree preservation