York considers policy in line with Trees In Towns II

City of York Council will this month decide whether to approve a draft arboricultural policy in line with national tree protection guidance, the Town and Country Planning Act and the government-backed Trees in Towns II report.

Image: Paul Tomlin (CC BY 2.0)
Image: Paul Tomlin (CC BY 2.0)

It will be considered by the Learning and Culture Policy and Scrutiny (pre-decision calling in) Committee on Wednesday 15 June, then presented in a report to an Executive Member decision session on 24 June.

The policy document covers the council's approach to tree risk management, maintenance and protection, the replacement of trees and tree-related insurance claims, and includes detailed provisions on tree inspections, tree management software, arboricultural justification for pruning or removing trees or for not doing so, standards required of both council and contractors, and the role of volunteers and community groups in tree planting and care.

The council is responsible for around 30,000 public trees in the city.

Executive Member for culture, leisure and tourism Councillor Nigel Ayre said: "It's important that we consider the management of these trees for the benefit of future generations and I will welcome the views of the cross-party scrutiny committee ahead of making any decision."

Meanwhile representatives of Clifton Moor Shopping Park to the north of the city have called for the removal of more than 100 semi-mature trees between the park and York's Outer Ring Road, claiming they obscure the view of potential customers and therefore hit tenants' sales.

The trees are under a Tree Preservation Order so proposals to fell them would need to be passed by the council's planning committee. York Green Party leader Councillor Andy D'Agorne, who sits on the committee, called the idea "incredible".

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