They can do this by brushing soil, mud, twigs, leaves and other plant debris off their footwear and wheels - including the wheels of cars, bicycles, mountain bikes, baby buggies and wheelchairs - before leaving the site. licence and on applying any replanting conditions. evidence of your awareness of the risks and your assessment of them, should a tree Ash (Fraxinus excelsior) is one of Britain’s 32 native species of trees. preservation order (TPO) already in place, the proper route to seeking permission to fell you may still have to give notice to the local authority before undertaking the growing seasons. Hymenoscyphus fraxineus is an Ascomycete fungus that causes ash dieback, a chronic fungal disease of ash trees in Europe characterised by leaf loss and crown dieback in infected trees. From here you can begin to focus on assessing the highest risk Where did ash dieback come from? Locations with statutory access rights, such as roads and public rights of way There is historic legal protection that provides for common land to remain unenclosed, approval, and will carry out checks to ensure the Standard is being complied with. failure of diseased ash trees. The principle tree and land protections are detailed below, but the list is not exhaustive. include managing nearby trees or woodland to improve its condition and create view is taken as to potential health and safety implications for tree and forestry the UK Forest Industry Safety Accord (UKFISA). ash management on SSSI woodlands affected by ash dieback. conditional; this means there is an expectation that restocking, by either regeneration or Movement of diseased ash trees is likely to be the cause of spread over longer distances. At the same time, there is a limited resource of suitably trained and skilled contractors access (and enjoyment of) those areas. ‘dangerous tree’ exception for felling infected ash trees. More information on felling licences can be found at Tree felling, Getting permission. The immediate effect of the spread of ash dieback is that a lot of these woodlands are being felled to protect the timber stock which means that there is and will be a lot of British ash firewood for sale in the short to medium-term. The infection is spread via windblown spores, and through the movement of infected ash trees. Regular survey work (we’d suggest late July to early August) will help to identify: Photographic records should be kept to record change in individual tree condition. The common ash Fraxinus excelsior young and old. 7 What is being done to help ash dieback? Such works include fencing, creating ditches, forestry works, new solid Where specific sites are protected for e.g. Where landscapes have been designated as having a special character e.g. It is estimated that around 90% of ash trees in the UK will be killed by ash dieback. have regard, when exercising their functions, to the purpose of conserving biodiversity, You must carry out planned operations carefully, making the necessary checks, and you Password. opportunity to develop and deliver suitable mitigation to the loss of ash trees. of tolerant trees may lead to more tolerant strains. Don’t include personal or financial information like your National Insurance number or credit card details. of ash trees (by small group, we mean areas of trees less than 20m wide and less than 0.5 hectares in area) – those trees in fields, hedgerows, verges and other open spaces such as Ash dieback diease is caused by the fungus Hymenoscyphus fraxineus, previously called Chalara fraxinea.. Current figures estimate that up to 95% of the ash trees in the UK will be lost to Ash dieback within the next 15 years, resulting in a major loss to our woodland and the biodiversity of these areas. See 'The Science' below for an explanation of the name change.) Licences for felling individual trees, groups of trees or wooded areas will usually be Since then, the disease has spread to all parts of the UK. Dealing with Ash dieback - Disease strategy. tree that is subject to a TPO. This may mean liaising with other Therefore, management of diseased ash trees should prioritise those trees in the highest What does Ash look like? We use this information to make the website work as well as possible and improve government services. If you follow good practice you should be able to carry out most activities without the This guidance aligns with the government approach to ash dieback, set out in the Tree Understanding what risks a land owner might face from ash dieback, particularly from ash variety of ecosystem services that ash had previously provided. These include the important tree in the landscape by, for example, undertaking compensatory tree planting relevant legislation. Trouble signing in? consultant, specifically detailing why a tree’s condition and the circumstances in The disease is also established in many other European countries, where it has had devastating effects. As the government bans ash imports to halt the spread of “dieback”and fells 100,000 trees affected by the disease , Channel 4 asks what effect it will have on the UK. Timescales on speed of decline vary; mortality has been observed in as little as two may need a wildlife licence in certain circumstances. There are now warning signs that the humble garden hedge may spread Chalara fraxinea - ash dieback. Current advice recommends that land managers should already be identifying their ash General advice is to restock from a variety of site suitable tree species that Notwithstanding assessing any health and safety risks associated with working off the woodland settings. Show the scale or size of In assessing what risks may exist, useful and detailed advice can be found in the National Mon – Fri | 9am – 5pm, Join the RHS today and support our charity. You must comply with regulations protecting wildlife species and habitats when you’re certification in the UK. In this instance an application would be referred to the Secretary of Whilst this is disappointing it is not unexpected given the experience of the spread of the disease in Continental Europe and Great Britain.The first finding of Chalara ash dieback in Northern Ireland was in November 2012 on recently planted ash trees. Notwithstanding this interpretation of a dangerous ash tree, the presence of ash dieback with appropriate machinery and equipment to undertake the likely safety work, including It will take only 2 minutes to fill in. In particular, their focus must be on Land managers need to prepare their resources and manpower to manage any identified An infected Ash tree will release spores into the air, which can be carried miles away. Managers note on felling ash dieback affected trees. locations first. The Forestry Commission will consult on felling proposals with those bodies. If any of these exceptions can be readily identified, then they can be used. Visitors to woods, forests, parks and public gardens can help to minimise the spread of chalara ash dieback and other plant diseases. requirement to replant. legislation – The National Trust Act 1971, deliberately capture, injure, kill or cause significant disturbance to a protected Ash dieback fungal disease, Chalara fraxinea, has been confirmed in 32 locations in the UK. example, as resting, breeding or foraging sites for important species, then mitigation Where a felling licence would normally be required to fell trees and the proposals for tree that you intend to work on or fell trees in a Conservation Area at least 6 weeks before any the Tree Preservation (England) Regulations 2012 and the Town and Country ash dieback in mind. Images should However, the Forestry Commission may investigate incidents of tree felling where a felling The main symptoms of ash dieback are: Dead branches, particularly in the high canopy. Ash dieback is a disease affecting ash trees caused by the fungus Chalara fraxinea. appropriate evidence to demonstrate that an exception did apply. The fungus overwinters in leaf debris on the ground, particularly on ash leaf stalks. Ash dieback has spread the length and breadth of England. reduction or lopping instead of felling, natural regeneration of felled trees and propagation In 2018 ash dieback has been found infecting three new ornamental tree and shrub species in the UK. Diseased trees are a potential safety risk. The ash dieback fungus could spread more quickly and affect more trees than previously expected, according to research. must be maintained as safe for public use. ash dieback. The UKFS ensures that rules on e.g. Supplementary Notice of Operations with your felling licence application. 020 3176 5800 Why cut down trees with ash dieback? need for a wildlife licence – but to do so you may just have to modify or reschedule some or limb removal works to mitigate the concern. land manager should be collecting to validate the use of this exception – see section 4.2 - mitigated by advance planting of new trees and woodland using locally appropriate our landscapes, and so there are some tree health related grant funding initiatives to help will fall across a road, or will fell We aim to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place. be used for exceptional circumstances where there is an obvious danger. A specialist team is looking at ways to safeguard the future of the species. Ash dieback is a serious disease of ash trees, caused by a fungus now called Hymenoscyphus fraxineus. secondary infection e.g. unbuilt upon and free from fences and other works that impinge on access to the land. Note: The citations for these protection areas were not written with major issues such as felling are within a Conservation Area, the Forestry Commission will consult with the These wind-borne spores are produced from small white mushroom-like structures, pictured right, which grow on last year’s fallen ash leaf stalks in the leaf litter. Natural England and the Forestry Commission have jointly prepared specific guidance for may be prepared to accept. To view this licence, visit or write to the Information Policy Team, The National Archives, Kew, London TW9 4DU, or email: Ash trees were first recorded dying in large numbers from what has now been described as ash dieback in Poland in 1992, and it spread rapidly to other European countries. advice from Natural England and the Forestry Commission, UK Forest Industry Safety Accord (UKFISA), Euroforest - Safety Guidance for by Jack Shamash. The fungus overwinters in leaf debris on the ground, particularly on ash leaf stalks. a number of ash trees, the location of specific trees with features of importance e.g. The disease inhibits the uptake of water, weakening the tree and leaving it susceptible to secondary infections. Ash trees across much of You may initially feel constrained by what is initially permitted. The disease affecting ash trees, first detected in Britain in East Anglia in 2012, is now found from Cornwall to Northumberland. England are now symptomatic of ash dieback, and it is expected that the majority of ash Ash dieback is caused by the fungus Hymenoscyphus fraxineus, which originated in Asia. New hope for tackling ash dieback as researchers claim charcoal treatment makes trees more resilient. The disease causes leaf loss and crown dieback in affected trees and often leads to the death of the tree. fruiting bodies (especially Armillaria fungi or Inonotus Hispidus brackets), lesions Some trees appear to have genetic characteristics that make them tolerant or resistant to the disease. of images over time to show decline in a trees condition. This disease has spread quickly and is now affecting woodlands across the UK, leading to the death of tens of thousands of trees. lower risk locations should be delivered as part of longer term tree management. associated species, such as bats, which may be affected when management on Jack Shamash reports. The fungus then grows inside the tree, eventually blocking its water transport systems, causing it to eventually die. for example, for work affecting protected species, or to work on protected sites. the disease has been established for over 25 years, and from the UK where, more times, RHS Registered Charity no. the site is a garden, public open space or churchyard, or that an alternative Hymenoscyphus fraxineus has been isolated from the roots of symptomatic trees, as well as from leaves, shoots and branch/stem lesions. Ash dieback has been making its way across Europe for decades and is believed to have arrived in Northern Ireland (NI) in 2012. should be avoided as the health of individual trees can vary from year to year and Monuments (SM), National Nature Reserves (NNR) or World Heritage Sites (WHS), are checklists, Managing ash in woodlands in light of ash dieback: Over longer distances the disease is likely to have spread through the movement of diseased ash plants, either privately or through the mass movement for planting around new developments. provided in greater detail online (see Managing ash in woodlands in light of ash dieback: mapping system for future reference and for operational planning purposes. Further guidance on species selection options for replacing ash dieback affected trees is dieback toolkit. the total height of the tree) of a highway, service There is no known cure or practical way to prevent the disease from spreading. Ash dieback can spread up to tens of miles by wind-blown spores or by trees growing too close to infected ash trees. the RHS today and get 12 months for the price of 9. clearly demonstrate the reason for felling the tree, and may include using a series does not in itself provide the authority to fell trees without a felling licence. As our third most common tree, they are a vital part of the ecosystems in our woodlands and hedgerows as well as a durable wood found in all our homes. to maintain a service or network e.g. authorities for temporary closure orders e.g. It is within falling distance (i.e. Documentary evidence that some other permission or exclusion from the need for You will need to create an account on the system, and create a map showing your trees The Forestry Commission will consult on felling proposals with the Local Access Forum. The disease attacks ash trees quickly and there currently is no prevention or treatment available. Chalara dieback of ash is a disease of ash trees caused by the fungus Chalara fraxinea. guidance on tree felling, or on management of ash trees affected by dieback: This Operations Note supports consistent assessment and decision making by the Forestry Commission in the use of felling licences and felling exceptions (Forestry Act 1967), but Asia, arrived in the UK via Europe. Ash dieback: the ruined Polish forest where deadly fungus began. These findings are unlikely to have a big impact on the environment as these plants are not native or widespread in the UK. In category: Pests and diseases Hymenoscyphus fraxineus is responsible for causing severe dieback on European ash (Fraxinus excelsior) and narrow-leaved ash (F. angustifolia) across Europe. an agent or contractor, must ensure that a felling licence has The advice is provided in the knowledge that land managers have an overarching duty to contractors managing or felling infected ash trees, as the risks are not yet well There has been a legal requirement to obtain Secretary of State Consent to carry out for controlling the management or felling of individual ash trees. The disease is now endemic. The fungus then grows inside the tree, eventually blocking its water transport systems, causing it to eventually die. registered practitioners and consultants – see section 9 - Sources of further advice. In the case of work on SSSI woodland, the Forestry Commission will help to secure that pruning or safe felling, that ash dieback will create. It Additionally, any ash tree showing basal lesions, either with or without evidence of ash trees showing obvious ash dieback symptoms or advanced signs of ash dieback. Stay signed in . likely to need additional consent from the relevant authority in order for work on the habitat, they can be very important for supporting biodiverse ecosystems. tree felling can have an increased sensitivity or disturbance factor. practitioners, who have responsibility for the management of individual and small groups Any assessment should look to identify ash trees that are: Make and keep records of what trees you have, what you see when you assess them, and When it is producing asexual spores the fungus is known as Chalara fraxinea, and the disease is therefore sometimes called Chalara dieback or just Chalara. non-woodland ash tree, the Forestry Act exception for a dangerous tree should only be Threat. planning authority on the proposals and seek agreement on issuing the felling Tree owners, The fungus can also produce asexual spores, but these are not believed to be infectious and can only spread over short distances by water splash. Having a felling licence in place will help you to: Important: Everyone involved in the felling of trees, whether doing the work directly or It is a stark depiction of the scale of the problem – the grey areas of the woodland canopy are dead and dying ash trees. This is likely to prevent any spore dispersal and may help to slow the spread of the disease in an affected area. designations also carry increased levels of protection in relation to specific habitats, with undertaking any tree felling. protected under other legislation (see section 8 - Other legislation and tree protection). Ash dieback symptoms. ash trees and corroborating those locations with site visits when compiling an application The fungus has several pathways of spread over long distances; It can be spread  through the movement of diseased ash plants and logs or unsawn wood from infected trees. Any The ascospores are produced in asci and are transmitted by wind; this might explain the rapid spread of the fungus. and in some instances visible bark lesions in branch or stem tissues which directly Q&A: ash dieback disease. and woodland. Whereas the earlier Act applied only to One of the exceptions within the Forestry Act 1967 considers dangerous trees. out any tree works on common land. assess forestry proposals, including tree felling, against the Standard before giving its An example survey checklist is shown in Appendix 1 - Example: A tree inspection felling work on the TPO. However, many cases have now been confirmed in the wider environment in the UK and the disease is widely distributed. of ash trees caused by a fungus (Hymenoscyphus fraxineus). understood. The evidence informing ash dieback policy and the resulting management advice is under on roadsides, in hedgerows, in fields, along public rights of way, and not just those in You can apply online for a Felling Licence. How do I recognise signs of the disease? Avoid you having to rely on gathering evidence in order to use an exception to fell a s.194), strengthened by the Commons Act 2006. pests and diseases can cause ash trees to become stressed and to decline. gardens and public open spaces), specific tree types (fruit trees) or land uses (orchards), If composting ash leaves in an area where ash dieback is known to be present, the Forestry Commission recommends covering them with with a 10cm (4-inch) layer of soil or a 15-30cm (6-12 inches) layer of other plant material, and leaving the heap undisturbed for a year (other than covering it with more material). trees will subsequently die from or be significantly affected by the disease in the coming Other problems such as drought stress, water logging, root damage, or other land manager to obtain a long term approved felling licence, but also, giving them an practitioners. point where they succumb to secondary pests or pathogens, e.g. good quality habitat for important species. Local spread, up to some tens of miles, may be by wind. Most importantly, keep written notes from the monitoring work; they will provide population or habitat. land registry records or other map evidence showing Some designated sites e.g. The fungus blocks water transport in the tree, leading to lesions in the bark, leaf loss and the dieback of the crown. The Forestry Commission is responsible for implementing the UKFS in England. Dieback on ash can also be the result of an infection by several wood decay fungi and also by the root pathogen honey fungus. Cankers caused by the fungus Neonectria ditissima and the bacterium Pseudomonas savastanoi pv. A felling licence only grants permission for a tree to be felled. Ash dieback is a serious fungal disease of ash trees, caused by a fungus now called Hymenoscyphus fraxineus. The UK Forestry Standard (UKFS) sets out the UK government’s approach to sustainable species, crown reduction or pollarding / re-pollarding, or, the felling of significantly affected trees. Current knowledge does not provide clarity on the impact of ash dieback on the life expectancy of individual ash trees, although up to 5% of ash trees will show genetic tolerance to the disease and many trees growing in open sites may not succumb to the disease and are likely to persist indefinitely. Standard compliant woodland management plan and the Forestry Commission review and Ash (Fraxinus excelsior and other species of Fraxinus) can be recognised by the following features; Useful images of both ash and ash dieback disease can be found on the Forestry Commission website. Fixed point photography, at both a close-up and a landscape scale. Note: Ash dieback does not affect mountain ash (Sorbus aucuparia). 222879/SC038262, Compound leaves which may be smooth or have finely toothed edges. The most disturbing aspect of ash dieback disease is that it continues to spread. These spores can blow many miles away. If you do not have a felling licence in place, and need one, an The pest ash bud moth (Prays fraxinella) affects Fraxinus excelsior causing hollowing out of buds and removal of bark at the base of shoots, sometimes leading to shoot killing. Legally manage your tree resources more strategically, and allow you to react to Crown reduction works necessary to remove any deadwood would, in the opinion of a When first identifying the location of individual ash trees on land which you are resources, to minimise the impact of tree felling activities on land managers and on regeneration), as required under a felling licence, will require consent as the subsequent A felling licence application should consider all the trees on your property, including those non-woodland trees on a property, not just those in woodland. It’s thought that the fungus found its way to Europe on commercially imported ash from East Asia. Once you have determined any ‘high risk’ locations, you will start to be able to determine We believe that through the assessment and survey process you will be able to identify Chalara dieback of ash, also known as Chalara or ash dieback, is a disease of ash trees caused by a fungus called Hymenoscyphus fraxineus. It is important that you understand the feature interests of these designations – they are and that for those bodies, conserving biodiversity also includes restoring or enhancing a cannot be issued if the local authority sustains an objection to the felling should also be used by other relevant authorities in England who also have responsibility The Forestry Act 1967 (Section 9(1)) states that the felling of growing trees, including This advice has been developed through the expert knowledge of UK researchers and However, this does mean that there will be a lack of, or very little, ash firewood in the long-term. About Ash and Ash Dieback. (The fungus was previously called Chalara fraxinea, hence the common name of the disease. be able to retain them longer and keep them as important tree features in the landscape. These the opportunity to put a TPO on the tree(s) affected by the felling proposal, should they Felling licence exceptions. Tree Safety Group – Common Sense Risk Management of Trees booklet - on identifying work takes place (but not more than 2 years in advance). We advise a precautionary risks resulting from changes in ash tree condition. It also alludes to the evidence a – Areas affected so far? The fungus has two stages to its lifecycle - a sexual stage, which helps the fungus spread, and an asexual stage, which is what grows on the tree and causes damage. First found in the UK February 2012, local spread is by wind and by movement of diseased plants over longer distances. We don't yet know what the full impact of Chalara will be in Northern Ireland. operations note 46). The Royal Horticultural Society is the UK’s leading gardening charity. Replanting with ash trees is not permitted due to the current embargo on ash plant Habitat mitigation, to offset any impact or loss as a result of felling trees, could signs of structural problems, and to consider issues such as biosecurity. planning authority before making our decision whether to issue a felling licence. used where the following criteria are all fully met: This interpretation identifies the relevant factors to be assessed in considering use of the Planning Act 1990. and soil resources are robustly applied. Since then the fungus has spread eastward killing large numbers of ash trees (Fraxinus excelsior).The fungus was first confirmed in the UK in 2012, although it is now known to have been present in the UK for a lot longer. The Forestry Commission will consult on felling proposals with the relevant authorities. There is no chemical control available to gardeners for this disease. Whilst this is disappointing it is not unexpected given the experience of the spread of the disease in Continental Europe and Great Britain. Ongoing monitoring of ash trees should focus on those trees in high or higher risk growing in a garden, churchyard, orchard or public open space. This gives the local authority Therefore, anyone proposing to use an exception should secure Armillaria fungi (honey This video footage was taken in 2019 from a helicopter that flew over the woodland between Butts Brow in Willingdon and Meads. Only trained and experienced tree surgeons or forestry workers should undertake work on The disease is spread through spores released from fungal bodies on fallen leaves, so collecting and burning those may help reduce repeat infections. However, it's threatened by the ash dieback fungus, or Hymenoscyphus fraxineus; a highly infectious, devastating disease. Joint make your application. management. Ash dieback has spread the length and breadth of England. all different, and the levels of intervention that Natural England, the relevant authority, – What trees does it affect? the tree using a rule, tape measure or, in distance shots, a person or a vehicle. Ash dieback is a disease that affects ash (Fraxinus) trees, caused by a fungus called Hymenoscyphus fraxineus. The timescale to receive an approved felling licence may take longer than is checklists. Over longer distances the risk of disease spread is most likely to be through the movement of diseased ash plants. licence has not been issued, and will take enforcement action where there is no obvious Where public access to the wider landscape is guaranteed on Open Access land and along A recent estimate suggested that ash dieback would cost the UK economy £15bn. Landscape impact resulting from loss of significant numbers of trees can be Felling proposals should be in the spirit of maintaining the TPO; a felling licence ash dieback (and by secondary pests or pathogens). Ash dieback, also known as Chalara dieback of ash, is a fungal disease that affects all species of ash trees (Fraxinus). Good Practice guidance has been published by the Forestry Commission and Natural The density of wider environment infections is still greatest in the east but there have now also been cases recorded in many other areas. Showing evidence of significant tree health risk factors, such as dead limbs, Extensive user guidance is provided to help you set up your account and property and to Email address. public roads, network infrastructure, buildings, rights of way, permissive access comply with the law, and should be acting now in their preparation to deal with the likely The disease has spread west across the country and is now affecting almost all parts of Wales. you will instead need permission directly from the local authority to undertake work on a requirement to consult the Forestry Commission before carrying out tree works, and there
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