The landscape of East Dunbartonshire is a blend of rural and urban communities rich in a variety of habitats, ranging from fertile agricultural land, rivers, peatland, grasslands and diverse specimen trees and woodlands.
The area has a range of beautiful landscapes that provide an attractive setting and biologically rich local environment, making East Dunbartonshire a popular place to live, work and visit. The area benefits from large numbers of tourists and visitors who are drawn to the area and contribute to local businesses, positively influencing the economy.
The woodland resource of East Dunbartonshire comprises of a number of different types – from ancient woodland to Policy planting, amenity hedges to signature trees, that all serve to provide a sustainable biological resource, clean environment and structural amenity within and around settlements.
East Dunbartonshire Council is committed to retaining, enhancing and developing the tree cover on publicly owned land where appropriate. As well as conserving this resource, the Council will endeavour to carry out a programme of tree inspection and maintenance as required, and devise strategic hedgerow, tree- and woodland- planting programmes to replace any diseased or veteran trees lost because of Council Inspections and subsequent remedial actions.
The Council has produced a Tree Management Policy that intends to focus on trees and woodlands within council parks, open spaces, schools and all other publicly adopted land or facilities including roads and roadside verges. This policy is informed and directed by various legal requirements relating to tree management, which are listed below and detailed within the document itself:
1. Council as landowners have a legal responsibility or Duty of Care to protect the public from potential hazards via the Occupiers Liability (Scotland) Act 1960 and the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.
2. Roads (Scotland) Act 1984 give Council powers to ensure that road users are safeguarded from danger from roadside trees and this includes trees on private land adjacent to or bordering the roadside.
3. In addition, the Town & Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997 provides methods of safeguarding particular trees from harm via the use of tree preservation orders.
The Policy provides information on the protection of trees, and their associated inspection and management. The Policy will focus on how Council resources will be used and what priorities the Council will be working to. Unfortunately there are many issues that members of the public may expect East Dunbartonshire Council to deal with regarding trees on Council land which cannot be resolved. The Policy will set out the Council position regarding these issues.
For further information on the Policy please contact the Council’s Streetscene Technical Support Team on 0300 123 4510.