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Waverley Borough Council Committee System - Committee Document

Meeting of the Western Area Development Control Sub Committee held on 25/02/2004
APPENDIX A - OBJECTION TO TREE PRESERVATION ORDER (NO. 27/03) - TREES ON LAND AT PANNELLS, LOWER BOURNE, FARNHAM



Summary & Purpose
To consider an objection to the making of a Tree Preservation Order (TPO) and to determine whether the Order should be confirmed, with or without modification. The report has no direct resource implications. There are environmental benefits in retaining trees which merit special protection.

Quality of Life Implications
Natural Resource Use
Pollution Prevention and Control
Biodiversity and Nature
Local Environment
Social Inclusion
Safe Communities
Local Economy
Natural
Resource Use
Pollution
Prevention and Control
Biodiversity
and Nature
Local
Environment
Social
Inclusion
Safe, Healthy
and Active
Communities
Local
Economy
Positive
Positive
Positive
Positive
N/A
N/A
N/A



1
APPENDIX A
WAVERLEY BOROUGH COUNCIL
WESTERN AREA DEVELOPMENT CONTROL SUB-COMMITTEE
25TH FEBRUARY 2004
_________________________________________________________________________
Title:

OBJECTION TO TREE PRESERVATION ORDER (NO 27/03) – TREES ON LAND AT PANNELLS, LOWER BOURNE, FARNHAM.

[ Ward Affected: Farnham Bourne ]
_________________________________________________________________________Summary and purpose:

To consider an objection to the making of a Tree Preservation Order (TPO) and to determine whether the Order should be confirmed, with or without modification. The report has no direct resource implications. There are environmental benefits in retaining trees which merit special protection.
_________________________________________________________________________
Quality of life implications – social, environmental & economic (sustainable development):

Natural Resource Use
Pollution Prevention and Control
Biodiversity and Nature
Local Environment
Social Inclusion
Safe, Healthy and Active Communities
Local Economy
Positive
Positive
Positive
Positive
N/A
N/A
N/A

E-Government implications:
The report has no direct E-Government implications.
Resource and legal implications:
Legal implications are covered by sections 10 - 14 Human Rights
_________________________________________________________________________
Background

1. A planning application (WA03/2234) to fell a mature Scots Pine the subject of a planning condition (Condition 2 attached to WA82/1117) was submitted on the 25th October 2003 by the owners of No. 4 Pannells, Lower Bourne, Farnham. The reason given for the desired removal of this tree was that it dominates a large portion of the garden, drops needles and cones and that roots will cause damage to drains.

2. Condition 2 attached to planning application WA82/1117 prevents the felling of trees at Pannells without the prior consent of the local planning authority. The condition was imposed in the interests of visual amenity. However, it is the advice of the Government, as contained within planning circulars, that TPOs should none be used for securing the long-term protection of trees, rather than conditions. Following the application to fell the Pine and in line with Government advice the Council made the tree (together with several others in the area) the subject of a TPO.

3. At the same time, the owner of No. 4 Pannells was given consent to remove two other trees which Officers considered to be in poor condition or in inappropriate locations.

Tree Preservation Order 27/03

4. On the 11th December 2003, TPO 27/03 was served as part of the current review of TPO’s in the Borough. (See plan at Annexe A to this report). The Order has been made in recognition of the amenity value provided for the wider area by the trees, both individually or collectively. The Order was one of three new Orders made in December 2003 to protect trees in this part of Lower Bourne. The orders affected all properties in Eldon Drive, Annandale Drive and Pannells.

5. The new Order protects 13 individual trees and 4 groups of trees on land at Pannells, a cul-de-sac with six dwellings, off Old Frensham Road, Lower Bourne, Farnham. The trees in question are visible from surrounding areas, help soften the impact of the built environment and add to the collective wooded appearance of the locality.

6. One objection has been received against this Order. This is, as stated above, from the owner of no. 4 Pannells regarding the inclusion of Scots Pine T8. The objector states that the tree is only seven metres from his house and four metres from the nearest drains. The objector’s surveyor has advised that the roots should be cut back so that they would not damage the drains. The objector has expressed concerns regarding the possible danger were this tree to be uprooted in high winds, and asks if the Council would take responsibility for any damage to the house or occupants.

Officers’ response

7. As regards the objector’s contention that the tree is too close to the house and drains, Officers are of the opinion that the tree, being situated to the north of the house and compared with many situations locally, should not considered to be too close. In reference to the advice concerning the severing of roots so that they will not damage the drains, the advice nationally is to address any problems with faulty pipe work in the first instance, and not to cut back roots of adjacent trees. No evidence of any current damage to drains has been reported here, and as such, insufficient justification exists at present to fell this tree on these grounds.

8. In relation to the objector’s concerns regarding the possible danger, Officers are of the opinion that this Scots Pine T8 is in good condition and there was nothing observed on site to suggest that this tree is any less firmly rooted, or likely to fail, than other trees in the surrounding area.

9. As regards the question relating to the issue of Waverley’s responsibility for any damage, the Council would only be liable to pay compensation if, on application, it unreasonably withheld permission to undertake works to address (for instance) an obvious hazard. Officers however are of the opinion that no such hazard exists here.

Human Rights Implications

10. In deciding to confirm the Order, the Council must have regard to the protection of human rights of the objector and others affected by the decision.

11. The rights of the European Convention affected by the decision arise from:

Article 1 of the First Protocol - right to peaceful enjoyment of possessions.

Article 8 - protection of the right to respect for one’s home.

12. Both are relevant to the objection regarding the Scots Pine T8 on land within the objector’s ownership.

13. The decision recommended by Officers to confirm the Order will interfere with the rights of the objector protected by those articles. However, the interference is in accordance with law and justified in the public interest to protect trees, which have an impact on the amenity of the area.

14. The objectives of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 are met by including measures that allow for the protection of trees. The preservation of the trees is necessary to preserve the visual amenity of the area. The Order is necessary in furthering the legitimate aims of the Development Plan. To confirm the Order does not place a disproportionate burden on the owner, who retains the right to make applications for works to the trees. In these circumstances the confirmation of the Order is not considered to be an unjustified or disproportionate interference with the Convention rights, and is the only action by which the Council may secure protection of the trees referred to.

Conclusion

15. It is your Officers’ view that the objections raised against the imposition of Tree Preservation Order 27/03, with particular reference to the inclusion of the Scots Pine T8, are either not substantiated or do not override the public amenity value presented by these trees.

Recommendation

It is recommended that the Tree Preservation Order 27/03 applying to 13 individual trees and 4 groups of trees on land at Pannells, Lower Bourne, Farnham be confirmed without modification.
________________________________________________________________________
Background Papers (DoPD)

Letter of objection from J & G Krish, 4 Pannells, Lower Bourne, Farnham (5/01/04)
Letter or response from Waverley Borough Council’s Assistant Tree Officer (15/01/04)

________________________________________________________________________
CONTACT OFFICER:

Name: Mr N Hammick Telephone: 01483 523072

E-mail: nhammick@waverley.gov.uk
Comms/western/03-04/044