These policies help determine whether or not requests for pruning of Warwick District Council managed trees should lead to action.
Every situation is different and all relevant policies will be taken into account when making a decision. We will also consider wider aims relating to individual areas.
Where there is a clear and foreseeable threat to the safety of people or property - and it is directly related to a tree's condition - then action will be taken to minimise that risk.
Risk that is an indirect consequence of a tree (e.g. slippery leaves) will only result in pruning when other options are not available.
Unfounded fear of a tree will not normally result in action to prune the tree.
Obstruction of street lights and road signs
The council will try to ensure that trees under its management do not obscure road signs or prevent street lights from illuminating the highway.
The purpose of street lights is to illuminate the public highway. The council will not normally take action to improve illumination of private property.
Action will normally only be considered when the space between the tree and the window of the nearest habitable room is:
- Less than 6m for trees with a height of over 12m
- Less than half the height of the tree for trees under 12m
- When the space between the edge of the tree's canopy and a vertical line through a window is less than 2m
A ‘habitable room’ is a dining room, lounge, kitchen, study or bedroom. It is not a WC, bathroom, utility room, landing or hallway.
If a tree falls within these guidelines then cases will be prioritised according to proximity and the orientation of the affected window. Tree works may not be done if the results of consultation with the local community show that the work would be unpopular with the rest of the community.
Television and other radio equipment
There is no right to good reception and it is often possible to fix poor reception involving trees by finding an engineering solution. Warwick District Council will only consider requests to prune trees to improve reception when:
- Engineering solutions have not been successful
- The work will not unduly affect the amenity or health of the tree and
- The work can be done within current financial constraints
Leaves, seeds and fruit
Leaves and seeds are carried freely on the wind and are outside the control of Warwick District Council. Clearing leaves from gutters and pathways and weeding of set seeds are normal seasonal maintenance which property owners are expected to carry out.
We will not normally prune to reduce the fall of leaves, seeds or fruit.
Honeydew is not controllable by pruning. Cleaning of affected surfaces is considered to be routine maintenance. Pruning will not normally be considered solely as a way of alleviating problems with honeydew.
Tree-related subsidence damage is a complex issue and each case will be considered on an individual basis.
Where damage has occurred, the council requires evidence that the tree is responsible. This includes assessment and monitoring of the tree.
Requests based on the possibility of damage occurring at an unknown point in the future will not be considered unless there other overriding reasons to take action.
Direct root damage
As with subsidence, cases of direct root damage will be considered on an individual basis. A balance will be struck between the nuisance experienced by individuals and the benefits offered by the tree to the wider community.
Trees will exploit any existing faults in drains. The removal of one tree will not prevent other vegetation from doing the same.
The best way to deal with tree root blockage of drains is to ensure that the drains are watertight. We will not normally take action in response to complaints that council managed trees are blocking drains.