The locations of all protected trees in Leeds can now be seen online in a new interactive mapping service.
The new information service offered by Leeds City Council shows all of the Tree Preservation Orders currently in place across the city.
There are currently approximately 2100 Tree Preservation Orders in place in Leeds dating back to 1945, providing legal protection to trees ranging from singles to large areas of woodland.
The new online system allows searches by address or postcode, and has been developed with a feature on smartphones to work together with location software to easily locate protected trees near where people are.
There service also identifies the 79 Conservation Areas across the city, which offer protection to large numbers of trees in much the same way as a Tree Preservation Order.
The system has been user tested by council officers as well as external professional tree contractors. Such contractors will now be able to take advantage of being able to check in real-time the location of any protected trees on sites they are working on in the city, which will reduce the risk of unauthorised work being carried out and therefore will help to protect the environment.
This will be of particular use to sole traders and small companies, who now have the ability to check the status of trees at a time of their choosing with instant results.
Leeds City Council executive member for the environment and active lifestyles Councillor Mohammed Rafique said:
“We are very pleased to have launched this new online mapping service, which gives immediate location information on all trees with protection orders in place across Leeds. This will help anyone who is unsure to be able to check the position easily and quickly, and will help all gardeners and professionals who work around trees every day with the result being better protection for our environment.
“Leeds values its trees which contribute greatly to the amenity of the city as a whole. They help improve wellbeing, control climate through carbon and pollutant capture, provide shading, wind reduction and flood control, as well as offering food and habitat to a wide range of wildlife.
“The council constantly strives to improve services and to protect the environment and this new online service will help to achieve this, so we would encourage as many people as possible to make use of this service from now on.”
The service is now available at https://www.leeds.gov.uk/planning/conservation-protection-and-heritage/tree-works-and-preservation