Tree Policy

Tree Policy

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Why trees are important

Trees are our history and our future. They define the landscape where we live, work and play.

Research proves that humans feel better when they are in the company of trees.

Even in urban areas we require contact with the natural world and trees bring this right into city centres, minimising the impact of the built environment by providing colour, shade, and shelter.

They act as way-markers and signposts for us and provide homes for wildlife.

By careful selection of species, it is possible to provide trees that will contribute to improved air quality, reduce noise, and control run-off from heavy rain.

Trees are integral to our wellbeing, health, and quality of life.

We are fortunate in Newcastle to have areas of parks and woodland which are freely accessible to the public and a large number of trees lining our residential streets and within the city centre.

A recently completed iTree Canopy study measured Newcastle’s area of tree canopy cover at 18.1% which is slightly above the national average but also revealed that some areas of the city have greater tree cover than others.

Not only is it important that our existing trees are conserved and managed to ensure they bring benefit to future generations, but we also need to identify and action ways to increase their numbers across the city.

This is the overriding objective of the City Council’s Tree Policy – Trees Newcastle.

What the trees policy includes

Our Tree Policy is about how we will protect and care for Newcastle's trees, hedges and woodlands and how we hope to plant more trees, in suitable places, to help improve Newcastle's environment.

Its objectives apply to all the trees within the city whether they are on council owned land, on land owned by other organisations or by individuals.

The document explains how we can support others in their tree management and encourage additional planting such as through the planning process for new developments.

The document includes targets and action plans that will allow us to monitor progress by:

  • Setting out the methodology the City Council will use to take stock of the tree population in the city.
  • Making a commitment to increase the number and type of trees.
  • Providing a mechanism to improve the provision and care of trees in the city.
  • Ensuring that decisions and activities undertaken in relation to trees are made in a structured and consistent way.
  • Monitoring the actions and policies for the care, management, and enhancement of the city’s tree population.

2021 trees policy update

Since Trees Newcastle was adopted there have been legislative and industry best practice changes which need to be reflected in this Policy. In addition, we need to ensure that Trees Newcastle provides adequate support to protect our trees against emerging issues such as pests and diseases and changes in the City’s development strategies, as well as enabling tree planting initiatives which help to protect the City against climate change and promote the health and wellbeing of our residents.

Local Government has also undergone huge changes in this period with finance and labour resources reduced to the point where it was inappropriate or difficult to deliver some of the aims of the previous Policy.

Trees Newcastle has therefore been revised taking these factors into account.

Contact us

Request more information

Should you require more information about our trees policy please contact our landscape and ecology department.

Email: landscape@newcastle.gov.uk

Phone: 0191 278 7878 and ask for Planning.

Report an issue with a tree

If you would like to report any issues with a Council tree, including those on YHN properties, please see our tree, shrub and hedge maintenance page.

Tree Preservation Orders

If you would like to discuss a protected tree – with a Tree Preservation Order, or within a conservation area - contact landscape@newcastle.gov.uk or phone 0191 278 7878 and ask for Planning.

You can find out if a tree is protected, via our interactive map on the TPO Trees page.

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