Trees and high hedges


The trees of Westminster, whether in parks, open spaces, in private gardens or on the streets, make a significant contribution to London's reputation as one of the worlds greenest cities.

Trees in parks, streets and cemeteries

We maintain Westminster's 9,000 street trees by inspecting and pruning existing trees on a regular cycle, and removing trees where necessary. 

An annual street tree planting programme also takes place to ensure the continued benefits of trees for future generations.

Trees in parks and council-owned cemeteries at East Finchley, Hanwell and Mill Hill are also maintained by the Tree Section. 

For queries about trees in streets and parks you can email us via​.

For queries about trees in our cemeteries, contact the Parks team

Privately owned trees

Many trees on privately owned land are protected by:

It is a criminal offence to carry out tree surgery or to remove trees protected in these ways without prior consent or notifying the council.

For further queries about privately owned trees, or to find out if a tree is subject to a Tree Preservation Order, please contact

Tree contractors

Approved tree works should be carried out by an adequately qualified and insured tree surgeon. If you allow unauthorised tree pruning or felling to take place, both you and your contractor could be prosecuted. 

See the Arboricultural Association's directory of tree surgeons

Carrying out works to protected trees

There are over 650 Tree Preservation Orders (TPOs) that protect thousands of trees for the public's enjoyment. 

If you wish to carry out almost any work to a protected tree, you must first gain the council's consent.

If you propose to carry out any work to a tree in a conservation area, you must give the City Council at least six weeks notice in writing (a section 211 notice). This gives the council an opportunity to consider whether a TPO should be made in respect of the tree(s). The quickest and easiest way to submit your application is online.

Apply online

Below is the checklist for information you need to submit with applications for works to  trees and a downloadable application form. If you aren't applying online you will need to post this application to the address on the form. 

Checklist for notifications/applications for tree works.

 Tree works application form

More information

High hedges

Residents can seek the intervention of the council when they have been unable to resolve a problem with a neighbour's hedge as a result of Part 8 of the Anti Social Behaviour Act 2003.

The legislation only applies if the hedge:

  • comprises of 2 or more trees/shrubs
  • is more than 2m tall
  • is mostly evergreen or semi-evergreen
  • is capable of obstructing light or views

If it is decided that a hedge adversely affects the reasonable enjoyment of the neighbour's home and garden,we can issue a remedial notice to the owner of the hedge setting out what must be done to reduce the height of the hedge, the time-frame for doing the work and what is required to prevent the problem happening again.

Read more information on high hedges

See the high hedges complaint form and the related guidance notes

Last updated: 4 April 2018