Hack it back, pay the price

A homeowner has been ordered to pay the value that his home increased after he cut off long branches on the oak tree in his back garden that blocked sunlight from his bedroom balcony. The large oak tree was subject to a tree preservation order and Samuel Wilson pleaded guilty to a charge of causing wilful damage to a protected tree. He was fined £1,200 but also ordered to pay back the increase in value of his home (£21,000) and the costs, totalling almost £40,000. This is the first case of this kind where a person has been fined under the Proceeds of Crime Act in relation to damage of a tree for the benefit of light.

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You can read more about tree preservation orders on the website here.