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Environmental Issues

Our priority when managing our trees is to retain them, to promote the benefits they bring to the urban and rural landscape. We follow current best practice and legislation when managing and caring for our trees.

We regularly survey and inspect council-owned trees for safety and information gathering purposes and record the results. This information includes details on species, age, condition, and any recommendations for work. The frequency of surveys and inspections depends on a range of factors such as tree location, condition, and our objectives.

This allows us to organise tree maintenance programs based on our priorities and objectives.

Please note that we can only carry out work to trees on council-owned land.

What happens when I request work to a tree?

Following a report, our arboricultural team will carry out a site visit to investigate. Once they have assessed the tree, the work will be prioritised and carried out in line with our tree maintenance policy. [PDF, 0.7MB]

Emergency issues will be prioritised and carried out within 24 hours of the report being made where possible.

What we will investigate

We will investigate and carry out work with issues such as:

  • root plate cracking /movement
  • holes or cavities
  • dead, rotten or diseased trees
  • fungi, fruiting body, mushrooms
  • broken or hanging trunk, stem, limb, branch
  • fallen or blown over trees
  • trip hazards
  • deadwood
  • failing/failed or split trunk, stem, limb, branch, part of the tree
  • trees/branches obstructing signs / view to road / footpath etc or blocking streetlights
  • low-hanging branches/crown over paths/roads/driveways
  • tree has started to lean
  • wind/storm damage
  • vandalism
  • vehicle has caused damage to tree
  • council tree suspected to be contributing to building subsidence
  • council tree is causing physical damage to property.

What we won't investigate

We cannot investigate the issues listed in the table below unless these are health and safety concerns - in such cases, they will be managed in accordance with our policy [PDF, 0.7MB].

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Reason Response
Trees blocking light

We understand that trees may cast a shadow or reduce natural light to an area of a garden or property. This is due to seasonal cycles which cannot be managed by pruning.

Trees overhanging garden

We understand that trees will naturally encroach into neighbouring land, which may be viewed as an unwanted nuisance. The property owner can prune back overhanging branches back to their boundary line. Please note: you should check to make sure the tree is not protected before carrying out any pruning works.

Trees growing too big

We own various tree species – each species has its own characteristics and may grow to tens of meters laterally and vertically.  We do not prune trees if the request is based on opinion that a tree is too tall, wide, or big.

Trees blocking my view

We will not prune a tree based on opinion of blocking a view from a point within a dwelling.

Trees blocking my TV signal

We will not prune trees considered to be interfering with TV or satellite signal. We would advise you to contact your network provider to help resolve the problem or consider installing a signal booster.

Trees growing into telephone lines

If a council tree is interfering with a telephone signal, we advise you to contact your phone provider to help resolve the problem.

Leaves are falling into my garden

Leaves are classed as a seasonal nuisance that cannot be managed by any kind of tree pruning. We do not prune trees for this reason nor offer a leaf collection service.

Squirrels from trees are causing a problem

We cannot control wildlife from using vegetation as an access point to enter property.

Birds in trees are making a mess on property/car etc. We cannot prevent birds from roosting or perching in trees and will not prune a tree for this reason. You may wish to consider other practical measures.
Trees dropping sap/sticky residue on property/car etc. Tree sap, sticky residue and aphid secretions are seasonal nuisances that cause an unwanted mess. Due to the nature of the nuisance, we cannot practically manage these by pruning the tree or felling.
Pollen, allergies, hay fever etc.

Trees naturally produce pollen as part of their phonology cycle. We cannot prune trees based on reasons related to pollen or allergies.


Trees attract all kinds of insect as part of their ecology connection within the environment. We cannot practically manage trees based on the naturally occurring ecology cycle.

Children/people climbing trees

Some trees may attract children or members of public to climb them, based on their structural formation. We cannot practically manage or prevent a person from climbing a tree. We advise you to contact your local community police officer if you believe it is a risk or anti-social behaviour.

Dropping berries, blossom, seeds, etc

Trees produce seasonal bioproduct which may cause a seasonal nuisance linked to other issues outline in this table. We will not prune trees for these reasons unless it has been suggested that there are poisonous, in which case we will investigate.

Tree roots and drainage systems

We will not cut, remove or prune tree roots to prevent them from entering an existing damage draining system.

How do I report an issue with a tree?

There are 2 ways you can submit a form to report an issue with a Huntingdonshire District Council (HDC) Owned Tree - via the customer portal or as a guest.

If you have a MyHuntingdonshire customer portal account or would like to create one, click on the Report an Issue with an HDC Owned Tree via the Customer Portal button below, sign in or register, then scroll down to the 'Outdoors and Trees - Report a Tree Issue form'. Your personal details will be filled in for you and you will be able to track the progress of your requests and save partially completed forms. 

Report an Issue with an HDC Owned Tree via the Customer Portal (Recommended)
You can also submit a form as a guest. However, you will not be able to track or receive feedback on your request. Also, our customer services team will only be able to provide limited support if you submit your form outside of the customer portal.
Report an Issue with an HDC-Owned Tree

Seasonal nuisance tree pruning

We may consider carrying out seasonal nuisance tree work if the issue is:

  • affecting someone who is:

    o elderly

    o disabled or has a medical condition

    o housebound

  • causing anti-social behaviour

  • blocking views/causing an obstruction to roads or footpaths.

In such cases, these requests will be managed in accordance with our tree management policies.

More in-depth information on how we manage our trees can be found on our Tree Strategy page.