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Inspections and maintenance

Trees are inspected every 3 years, between February and October. This includes trees in:

  • the street
  • communal areas on housing estates
  • street properties
  • schools
  • parks
  • other council properties

Trees are inspected by a tree officer who will decide whether tree work is necessary. During the 2024-25 financial year we are inspecting street and housing estate trees mainly in the wards of:

  • ​​​​​​Belsize
  • Fortune Green
  • Frognal
  • Hampstead Town
  • Kilburn
  • South Hampstead
  • West Hampstead

Use the trees in Camden map to see when trees were last inspected and next due for inspection. Select the search box in the top left corner to search for a tree location. 

Tree pruning

General tree pruning works take place any time of year. We do not prune trees for:

  • light reasons
  • droppings such as leaves, fruit or bird droppings
  • being perceived as too large or overgrown
  • allergies
  • lifting of pavement or kerbs - engineering solutions will be sought for this

Crown re-reduction works

Crown re-reduction works is the regular removal of branches and stems to maintain a smaller height and spread of a tree. This is carried out on a two or three year cycle depending on location and condition of the tree. Works are normally carried out between September and April depending on the weather.

The main reasons we carry out re-reduction works are:

  • tree related subsidence
  • trees damaged by high winds or vehicle strikes
  • structural weaknesses in the tree
  • containing tree size for management reasons
  • tree root severance
  • veteran tree management

Camden Tree Policy

Outstanding tree works

Below is a map of current outstanding works on highways, housing communal and parks trees. Select the search box in the top left corner to search for a location. 

Tree removal 

  • We only remove trees if they are:
  • dead or dying  
  • dangerous  
  • involved in tree related subsidence claims, but only as a last resort 

See our tree policy for more information.

A notice is normally placed on the tree approximately 10 days before removal work is carried out.  Our tree contractor deals with tree and stump removal separately due to the types of equipment used. Stumps are normally removed within 3 months and the tree pit is left ready for replanting.

We plant new trees for the majority of trees removed. In some cases the sites are unsuitable for replanting because: 

  • underground services are too close to the tree pit area 
  • of changes in the immediate surroundings 
  • the area was originally not suitable for planting 
  • the tree was removed because of subsidence and the area is unsuitable for replanting a small tree.

Use the trees in Camden set to be removed map to see both trees to be removed and vacant tree pits. Select the search box in the top left corner to search for a location. 

Planting and Watering

We aim to increase our number of trees by funding the planting of at least 400 trees per year. Most are replacements for trees removed following our cyclical inspections, but we also seek out new planting locations across the borough. Planting runs from October to March and covers all council owned land.

To propose a new planting location, contact us before September for planting in the current planting season. Selection of tree species is based on our aims to increase the diversity of our tree stock and to plant the largest appropriate tree for the location. 

For more information on our aims and objectives, download the Camden Tree Planting Strategy 2020-2025.

Tree pit replanting 

The list of tree pits to be replanted is compiled annually and runs from October to September the following year. When a tree is removed, a vacant pit is noted on our database.

Current vacant pits can be found on the Trees in Camden map.

Young tree maintenance and watering

After planting, trees have three seasons of young tree maintenance. This includes weeding, adjustment or removal of stakes and watering. Trees are watered from May to September every two weeks. 

We encourage everyone to help us water all newly planted trees in the borough to help them establish in their new home. To help water, please use the irrigation bag and pour water into the hole on the bag above the new “help water me” sticker. The bag will slowly release the water into the soil over 3-6 hours.  Share your watering by using #camdentreesneedyou on Twitter.

A map of trees planted in the last three seasons is below to help you locate your nearest new tree.

High Speed 2 replacement tree planting  

High Speed 2 (HS2) expects to remove 504 trees for construction of the new railway. HS2 will fund the replacement of all trees lost.  We will plant 35 trees in winter 2018/19. All council-owned land is being considered for planting, including housing, parks and street tree sites. HS2 is responsible for planting around 350 trees on the land it owns. We’ll work with HS2 to ensure its replacement trees are the right size and type for their locations. HS2 set up a panel to review and challenge the removal of trees by HS2 contractors. The panel has representatives from the Council and community.

Find out more 

Tree damage

If you are concerned that damage to your private property is related to a Council owned tree, contact your insurer first. Your insurer will then make contact with our insurance department. We do not deal directly with claims.

If you live in Council owned property and think that tree related damage is happening:

Report a repair

Commemorative trees

You can request to plant commemorative trees on Council-owned land including:

  • parks and open spaces
  • housing estates

Sites are very limited in parks, so we may not have space in the park you choose. 

We can no longer allow commemorative plaques next to trees because of problems with vandalism and maintenance. You are not allowed to place cremated remains of the deceased in or around the tree pit. 


The cost for commemorative planting is usually (tree species dependent): 

  • £574.00 for the tree, planting and three years watering and maintenance + VAT  
  • £608.98 for an administration fee  

We will confirm total cost in writing or by phone.

To request to plant a commemorative tree email us at [email protected]

Flowers in street tree pits  

You can improve tree pits on your street with annual or perennial plants. Tie a green ribbon around the tree trunk where plants have been planted in the tree pit. This is to let street cleaners, weed eradication personnel and tree operatives know that plants have been planted. 

Damage to plants 

Every attempt will be made to ensure plants are not damaged due to maintenance. This may not always be possible, particularly if bulbs are planted and no flowers are visible. Removal of trees and grinding out the stump will result in unavoidable damage to plants as the stump and roots will need to be removed for future replanting. Any plants residents wish to keep should be removed work takes place. Loss of plants during maintenance works will not be compensated.  

Modifying tree pits 

Residents shouldn’t build raised edging around tree pits or add landscaping materials such as gravel or pebbles. This creates a trip hazard and can result in claims for personal injury. Any modifications will be removed as a matter of public safety. Raising the soil level can lead to additional stress or death of the tree. Tree pits with newly planted trees should not be disturbed until the 4th season. Street trees are under stress to establish themselves in their new location and competition for water or nutrients from other plants can be detrimental to the tree's health.

Tree emergencies

For fallen trees across the public highway or dangerous/fallen Council owned trees, call our 24 hour emergency service on 020 7974 4444.