Tree Felling Regulations
Tree felling is governed by The Forestry Commission (TFC). The only exceptions are if your woodland is covered by a Tree Preservation Order or if it lies within a Site of Special Scientific Interest. Otherwise, TFC allows most types of routine cutting that you’d likely want to carry out.
For example, they only count trees as those that have a diameter greater than 8cm at breast height. Therefore, beyond that, you can without needing any permission whatsoever to cut five cubic metres in any one calendar quarter for private use only. This can be simplified basing it on volume and calculating it from diameter and height, without the need to take in to account branches. TFC have published a summary of timber volumes based on diameter and height. Therefore, as an example, you’d be able to cut down 70 trees that are approximately 15cm in diameter and are 4m tall, every three months. This allows a very reasonable allocation for clearing paths and general woodland management. If you don’t feel comfortable carrying out this type of tree felling, contact fifefirewood.co.uk who will be able to help with such a task.
However, if you want or need to fell a greater volume of trees, you will need to contact TFC. And apply for a felling licence. Typically, a local Forestry Commission officer will meet with you in your woodland to discuss. Likely, he/she will discuss a management plan which will cover the entire area of your woodland for a period of several years. An added bonus about meeting with a local Forestry Commission officer is that they will be able to point you in the right direction for grants that may be available if you need to carry out a significant amount of felling. Furthermore, TFC are exceptionally useful and are very knowledgeable, also the meeting will be free of charge, advice and most importantly the licence for felling too.