Mistaken identi-tree: tree surgeons fined more than £1,000 for cutting down protected tree in Hampshire

Kingswood Firs, where the protected tree was damaged.
Kingswood Firs, where the protected tree was damaged.
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A tree care company has been ordered to pay £1,450 after damaging a a protected silver birch in Hampshire.

Green Frontiers Garden Care, from Headley, had been contracted to remove a diseased tree at a property in Kingswood Firs, Grayshott.

However, the tree surgeons from the company removed around a third of the canopy before realising they were working on a tree protected by a Tree Preservation order.

East Hampshire District Council’s arboriculture team brought the prosecution against the company, which pleaded guilty on 22 August at Basingstoke Magistrates Court.

The arboriculture team said the damage had caused ‘large wounds’ to the protected tree and had left it vulnerable to fungal decay and other diseases.

The company was ordered to pay £1,450, including a fine of £700, a victim surcharge of £70 and £680 as a contribution of costs to East Hampshire District Council.

East Hampshire District Council takes environmental protection very seriously and any contravention of Tree Preservation Orders will be formally investigated and prosecuted where appropriate.’