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Expert witness / litigation

Simon frequently acts as an Expert Witness in civil and criminal cases concerning trees. In the past this would always involve being instructed by one party or the other, but more recently he has also been instructed as a Single Joint Expert under the Civil Procedure Rules introduced by Lord Woolf. He has also given evidence at public inquiries and inquests.

Recent cases include acting for a Rule 6 party in a major public inquiry into the construction of a basement in Hampstead Garden Suburb

He was the expert witness for the second Defendant in the widely reported case of Stagecoach -v- Hinds and Steel [2014] EWCH 1891 (TCC), which was heard at the High Court of Justice in London.

Tree related legislation

Many trees are legally protected, typically by Tree Preservation Orders [TPOs] or if they are growing in designated Conservation Areas, but there are many other restrictions that can affect them either directly or indirectly. For instance the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (as amended), the Countryside and Rights of Way (CROW) Act 2000, the Conservation (Natural Habitats etc.) Regulations 1994 and other legislation protect all bats and many of the birds that nest or roost in trees. This can restrict pruning and felling unless suitable precautionary and protective measures are taken. This is an area where sound professional advice is becoming increasingly necessary.
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