To answer the question directly, in the UK you are allowed to cut back any tree branches that are overhanging your garden as long as you return them to the owner of the tree. This is often called the ‘right to abate a nuisance’. You can find more information about this on the UK government website.
If you want to avoid any potential conflict with your neighbour, it might be a good idea to talk to them first and explain why you want to trim their tree. They may be happy for you to do it or they may have their own plans for the tree. It’s always best to communicate with your neighbours before taking any action.
Checklist – How to approach a tree surgery discussion with your neighbour
- -explain why you want to trim their tree
- -be polite and respectful
- -offer to trim the tree for them
- -if they are not happy with you trimming the tree, you could suggest that they trim it themselves or hire a professional tree surgery team
Your rights as a neighbour – What if the trees are blocking your light?
In the UK, you have a right to light from any artificial source (such as a street light) and from natural sources (such as the sun). This means that if your neighbour’s trees are blocking your light, you may be able to do something about it.
Should you seek advice from tree surgery professionals?
If you are unsure about anything to do with trimming your neighbour’s tree, it is always best to seek advice from professionals. Tree surgeons are trained in how to carry out this work safely and will be able to advise you on the best course of action.If you have any questions and would like to hear from a team with the answers, we’re here to help. By all means contact us with a question relating to trimming, pruning felling or even removal of a tree stump (or singular branches) encroaching on your property.