In 2016 we started to review the Tree Preservation Orders (TPOs) in the National Park. We have 34 TPOs in total, including individual trees, groups of trees and woodland such as the avenue of trees at Kilmaronock, specimen conifers trees in Blairmore, and the Poker Tree at Aberfoyle.
What is a TPO?
A TPO (Tree Preservation Order) affords a tree, a group of trees or a woodland protection from felling or any other works i.e. removal of branches etc. unless prior formal consent for the felling or tree works has been granted by the National Park Authority.
Why are we reviewing our TPOs?
We are re-assessing the merits of each TPO and updating them, for example, if consent has been given to remove the tree or if it has blown down. As a result, a TPO may be revoked (removed), varied, or there may be no amendment at all.
Where are we now?
The first phase of the review has been completed. From the six TPOs that we have reviewed, one has been revoked at Kilmun and two others at Blairmore and Kilmaronock have been amended.
TPO fast facts:
A TPO is made by a planning authority to protect specific trees, groups of trees or woodlands, usually within towns and villages, which it considers contribute to the attractiveness and character of the local area and are in threat of removal from development.
Tree Evaluation Methodology for Preservation Order (TEMPO) is used to assess whether a tree should be protected. The assessment looks at aspects such as condition and retention span of the tree(s), public visibility, the cultural or arboricultural significant and the risk that the trees are under.
The owner of the trees/woodland is responsible for the management and maintenance of trees/woodland protected by TPO. A TPO does not prevent management and maintenance.
Trees are also protected from felling through the requirement for a felling licence although trees in a garden, orchard, churchyard or designated open space are exempt from a felling licence.
In the National Park there are 8 Conservation Areas – Callander, Drymen, Gartmore, Killin, Luss, Milton, Tyndrum and St Fillans. In a Conservation Area consent is needed for tree works, including reduction or lifting of the crown, removing limbs or felling, but these trees are not necessarily protected by TPO. As a Planning Authority, we would not usually object to tree works being carried out in a Conservation Area, but if consent is not approved, then we have the opportunity to make a TPO if necessary.