The Council is responsible for maintaining many thousands of trees on more than 870 hectares of public open space, woodlands and housing areas. We have completed a survey of all amenity trees within our community parks, informal green spaces, cemeteries, housing sites and certain trees in woodlands. This involved putting their location, species, approximate age and condition into a computerised tree management system. Our programme of proactive tree inspections manages the health and safety of our tree stock and prioritises remedial tree surgery identified during them. The term "urban forest" is used to encompass all the trees in an urban environment, whether they are garden, street or parks trees. It involves planting and managing of all trees within towns or cities. It is generally accepted that woodland within towns and cities also comes under the heading "urban forestry". The Borough's urban forest contributes significantly to our reputation for being an attractive place to live, work in and visit. We are proud of our verdant character and the tree cover helps to soften our urban environment and helps make our surroundings a healthier place. There is increasing public awareness of these benefits and the need for trees as people place a higher priority on their environment.
New tree planting is an important element of our tree management function to ensure tree cover is maintained for future generations. Trees take decades to mature so the loss of older trees has a significant impact. To ensure the Borough retains its existing levels of tree coverage re-planting must take place continuously. Newly planted trees need specific maintenance during their initial establishment. It is becoming increasingly difficult to establish new trees, particularly in urban areas due to the range of underground services, competition for space, limited soil volumes, poor soils, pollution, vandalism, and the impacts of climate change. Where trees have been removed from Council land it is important, they are replaced during the following planting season to sustain our tree heritage. Young tree maintenance is not only crucial to the survival of a newly planted tree, it ensures future problems are remedied before they become high cost maintenance issues or health and safety concerns. All newly planted trees are maintained until they are established (between 3 - 5 years) depending on the species and planting environment.
Trees situated on the highway, in areas such as grass verges, are the responsibility of Hampshire County Council. For further information please contact 0300 555 1388 or visit the Hampshire County Council report it webpage.
In March 2012, Fareham Borough Council adopted the Tree Strategy 2012 - 2017 (198 KB) for the planning and management of the Borough's urban forest. Its aim is to protect, promote, sustain and enhance our trees and woodlands and to recognise their contribution towards the character and appearance of the Borough.
Following a review of the Council's tree service in 2021 the Council is preparing a new Strategy document for the next ten years, which we aim to publish in 2023.
We are responsible for managing 60 hectares of woodland including many areas of ancient woodland. We have developed management plans for important woodlands in our ownership.