New powers were created for local authorities under Part 8 of the Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2003 to tackle problems associated with high hedges.
A 'high hedge' is defined (section 66 of the Act) as a line of two or more evergreen trees which rise to a height of over two metres above ground level.
What we can do
The local authority may take action against the owner of a property where such a high hedge is growing, if the hedge forms a barrier to light or access, such that the owner or occupier of a neighbouring property has his reasonable enjoyment of that property adversely affected.
Formal action by the local authority could require the owner of the hedge to reduce its height to a maximum of 2 metres. The council could not require the hedge to be completely removed.
The council may decline to investigate a high hedge complaint where it considers that the complainant has not taken all reasonable steps to resolve the matter him/herself.
Making a complaint
If you feel you would like to make a complaint about a high hedge please see the guidance notes and complete the complaint form below.
The cost of making an application to the council is £520, this is not refundable.