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Council sets out policy to manage trees

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Dudley Council has earmarked £100,000 to help manage thousands of trees across the borough as set out in a new draft policy.

The council is responsible for approximately 170,000 trees in various locations including parks, open spaces, natures reserves and housing estates.

Every year, it receives 10,000 queries from the public related to trees with action only needed in one fifth of cases.

In a new draft policy, the council sets out clear guidelines on how it will respond to queries related to trees which are causing a nuisance to the public.

It will take appropriate action if a tree is found to be having a significant impact on a resident’s property following an inspection.

This could be extreme loss of light, which results in internal lights needing to be switched on in the day or where there is an impact on someone’s health.

In extreme cases where a tree has to be removed entirely then replacement trees will be planted on a three to one ratio.

The draft policy also sets out where the council is unable to take action such as issues with fruit falling, sap and poor mobile phone signal.

Councillor Shaz Saleem, cabinet member for highways and public realm, said:

We all know trees are invaluable assets, providing habitat for our wildlife and helping the environment by reducing carbon emissions.
We understand some trees can be a bone of contention for some residents and we want to set out clear guidelines on what action we are able to take and help manage people’s expectations.

A draft decision sheet outlining the proposals is published on the council’s website.

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