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High Hedges

The high hedges procedures, introduced by the Anti Social Behaviour Act 2003,  may come into effect when the following apply:

  • 2 or more mostly evergreen or semi-evergreen trees or shrubs are present
  • If they are over 2 metres tall
  • And affecting your enjoyment of your home or garden because it’s too tall

You can cut back branches or roots that cross into your property from a neighbour’s property or a public road.

You can only cut back to your property boundary. If you do more than this, the neighbouring landowner could take you to court for damaging their property.

If you live in a Conservation area, or the trees in the hedge are protected by a Tree Preservation Order (TPO), you will need the Council’s permission to cut them back.

In the first instance, please read : Suitable Garden Hedges 

If your property borders a road or public pedestrian walkway

The Councils highways authority can ask you to cut back hedges or trees on your property if they’re causing an obstruction to the highway. If you refuse, they can carry out the required work, on your property without your permission, to do the work themselves. You may be charged for this.

Boundaries and shared walls

Disputes about where the exact boundary is between 2 properties can be difficult to solve, you can get an idea of the boundary by checking your title deeds, contacting HM Land registry or seek legal advice.

You must give notice to your neighbour if you are going to carry out work on a shared wall/hedging.

Useful Information:

Complaints regarding high hedges on private land are dealt with by our Public Health & Protection department.

They can be contacted via our customer service centre 9am to 5pm on 01443 425 001 or by emailing

Please note: To allow the Council to progress any applications, certain criteria and forms must be completed and you must have made attempts to resolve the situation before making your complaint.

Other links:

If your complaint is in relation to a high hedge please view our information below.