Trees remain integral to our well-being. This can be the case in and around our towns and cities, where populations and pressure from development are greatest. Scottish Planning Policy (2014) states in paragraph 216 that ancient semi-natural woodland is an irreplaceable resource and, along with other woodlands, hedgerows and individual trees, especially veteran trees of high nature conservation and landscape value, should be protected from adverse impacts resulting from development. Tree Preservation Orders can be used to protect individual trees and groups of trees considered important for amenity or their cultural or historic interest.
The environmental benefits of trees within the urban environment are already well documented, but they also contribute at a social level as well, playing a vital role in forming the character and identity of an area itself, and providing a positive focus with which communities can engage. Trees are a vital component of natural green space, which has been shown to have a positive impact on physical and mental health at both the individual and the community level. An urban environment might therefore be seen to be all the poorer without trees.
Download PDF: Trees and Development report