2nd August 2018
Revised National Planning Policy Framework
ATF response to revised NPPF
The ATF are, of course, very pleased that our detailed representations, together with co-ordinated efforts by our partner organisations (in particular the Woodland Trust and Arboricultural Association), have influenced this revised NPPF so that government has properly recognised the value of these truly remarkable trees. Ancient and veteran trees are better protected than ever before for their cultural, heritage value and as irreplaceable habitat. Their loss or deterioration should now only be permitted in wholly exceptional circumstances when deciding planning applications. This puts ancient and veteran trees on a par, in policy, with ancient woodland (which includes ancient wood pasture) and other highly valued elements of the natural environment such as SSSIs and the built heritage.
We are also pleased that the exceptional value of ancient trees has been recognised. We look forward to working with Natural England and partners to provide guidance on identification of ancient and veteran trees to ensure that this policy advice achieves its aim of protecting irreplaceable habitats and England’s unique tree heritage.
We value the work of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Ancient Woodland and Ancient trees in helping to achieving this, especially their chair, Rebecca Pow, who spoke eloquently of her support at our conference last year, and who has been a staunch ally.