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Trees in Conservation Areas and Application Forms

Conservation area designation protects all trees within the boundary from harmful topping, lopping or felling.

What is a conservation area?

Conservation Areas have been in existence nationally since 1967. The Planning (listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 imposes a duty on the council to "...from time to time determine which part of their area are areas of special architectural or historic interest, the character of which it is desirable to preserve or enhance..." There are currently 12 conservation areas in Sedgemoor. Each area is considered by the Council to have special qualities of local importance.


List of Conservation Areas in Sedgemoor

Conservation Area

Date Designated

Axbridge17th April 1991
Burnham-on-Sea27th January 1988
Bridgwater18th September 1991
Cannington18th September 1991
Cheddar17th April 1991
Lympsham9th December 1987
Nether Stowey18th September 1991
Shapwick18th September 1991
Spaxton18th September 1991
Stone Allerton17th April 1991
Weare17th April 1991
Wedmore17th April 1991


Effects of Conservation Areas

The designation of a Conservation area limits the amount and type of alterations and extensions, which can be undertaken without the need for planning permission. It also introduces control over work to trees and any demolition. Any application for development which affects the Conservation Area, either within or adjacent to it, will be given careful consideration by the District Council to determine how it would affect the character of the area. Each planning application for development within the Conservation Area will be advertised in the local press, and a notice will be displayed at the site. Anyone can make their views about the proposal know to the District Council and all comments received will be taken into account.

Trees in conservation areas

Conservation area designation protects all trees within the boundary from topping, lopping or felling by requiring owners to give the District Council six weeks notice of their intention to carry out any such tree works.

During the 6 week period the Local Authority may make the tree the subject of a Tree Preservation Order and thereby fully protect the tree. It is an offence to carry out the work without the consent of Sedgemoor District Council.

To view decisions relating to works to trees in conservation areas please click on 'Planning Online' link below.

To find out if a tree is in a conversation area please, use see Interactive Mapping Online.


You do not have to give the Local Authority six weeks' notice:

  1. for cutting down trees in accordance with a felling licence granted by the Forestry Commission or a plan of operations approved by the Commission under one of their grant schemes
  2. for work which is exempt from the requirement to apply for consent under a Tree Preservation Order. (Anyone proposing to cut down a tree in a conservation area on the grounds that it is dead, dying or has become dangerous is advised to give the Local Authority five days' notice before carrying out the work, except in an emergency)
  3. for work carried out, by or on behalf of, the Local Authority (ie the Council as a whole and not just its planning department)
  4. for work on a tree with a diameter* not exceeding 75 millimetres (or 100 millimetres if cutting down if cutting down trees to improve the growth of other trees, i.e. thinning operations).

    *diameter as measured at 1.5m above ground level. In the case of multi-stemmed trees, the exemption applies only if the diameters of all the stems are less than 75 millimetres or 100 millimetres, as the case may be.

Please use our Interactive Mapping Online Tool to produce a location plan and indicate the position of the trees requiring works.

Application Form

There is no charge made by the Council to process an application. We recommend that wherever possible the advice of a qualified, competent and insured arborist is sought prior to submitting an application.

Guidance Notes

Validation Checklist

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