Tree Surgeon Prices 2022 : Comparing Top Tree Removal Costs In UK


Usually, people want to trim their hedges or trees for a variety of reasons. The presence of a diseased or old tree may be one reason someone would want to use emergency tree removal services. Such trees may likely collapse or spread their disease to others.

However, these are not the only ones. Another thing you might want to do is cut down a tree that is in your way. In some cases, you might not want to cut down the entire tree. Instead, you can ask a tree arborist for their services in trimming trees. A dead or dying tree may also require the assistance of tree removal experts to be removed. Tree surgeons intervene in these situations to save the day.

Arborists, also known as tree surgeons, are knowledgeable people who can assist you with tree services. These people can identify tree diseases and offer assistance with tree felling, tree pruning, and stump removal.

Costs for removing trees differ based on a number of variables, which we will go over as they go. This article will examine the average tree surgeon fees and how to find one.

With value-added taxes (VAT), the typical arborist in the United Kingdom bills anywhere from £300 to £500. At first glance, this estimate might appear to be excessive. However, you’ll likely disagree after thinking about the services provided. This price includes everything, from cutting down garden apple trees to removing ornamental trees. With this estimate, you can also get rid of large trees or oak trees. As a result, after taking into account these factors, you will appreciate the price range.

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Tree Surgery Prices UK

The average price an experienced tree surgeon charges depends on several factors. The cost can depend on the tools needed for the job and the task at hand. In the table below, you will see the average prices charged for various tree removal services. On average, you may end up paying £400 for a task that would normally cost only £200 on a typical day.

Tree Surgery: Task Duration & Estimated Price

Tree Surgery Task Duration Estimated Price
Tree Pollarding Half a day to one day £100-£500
Tree survey Depending on the number of trees £250 and above
Tree lopping Half a day to one day £100 – 500
Grinding and stump removal Half a day £200
Tree pruning Half a day to one day £100 – £500
Trimming the hedge (30m of long conifers) Half a day £100-£500
Removing the hedge (30m of conifer) Half a day to two days £500
Large tree felling Two to three days £3000
Small tree removal Half a day to one day £500
Coppicing Half a day to one day £500

A tree surgeon typically has a fairly thorough estimate before they cut a tree. You will therefore be aware of your payments’ amounts and purposes. However, depending on the job, prices for small tree removal, falling branches, pruning, and other necessary tasks may vary.

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Tree Pruning

In order to encourage growth, tree pruning removes branches that are either dead or suffering from a disease. The size of the tree and the amount of work involved will determine how long it takes to complete this task.

Tree pruning may cost around £100 on average, but the price will depend on how many members of the team will be working on the project. The final cost might range from £400 to £600.

Tree Pollarding

A technique called tree pollarding is used to cut off a tree’s top branches. This method aims to maintain a predetermined height of the tree and encourage the growth of dense foliage. By removing these, a tree’s overall weight is reduced and its ability to resist wind is decreased.

The duration of the task is determined by the size of the tree and the productivity of the workers. Pruning is a subdivision of pollarding, so their costs should be very similar.

Tree Lopping

Tree lopping involves cutting off side branches to shorten and alter the shape of the tree. Most people lop trees recklessly, which harms the tree in the long run. However, you can hire an arborist to do the work. The tree will be carefully lopped by an arborist using one of two approved techniques: pollarding or hedging.

Small Tree Removal

Smaller trees are typically simple to cut down and don’t require a lot of tools or expertise. You might want to manage this project yourself, but hiring a professional tree surgeon is always preferable. You should find additional work for tree surgeons because they will complete the task quickly. You might want to use all of the money you are paying them since you will be paying them by the hour.

Large Tree Felling

Over time, small trees inevitably become larger ones. Most likely, you chose a spot in your backyard where a young sapling could be planted without causing any issues for others. But now that it has reached full maturity, it is almost as tall as your property. The foundations of your home frequently come into contact with tree roots. Even worse, it contracts a disease and has a shorter life span. That is, it will soon fall on your home or your neighbours’. However, you should refrain from attempting to take it down on your own. Instead, employ the services of a tree cutter or surgeon to remove it from the ground level. You may also use a chainsaw to cut down a tree, but this should only be done by professional tree surgeons.

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Grinding & Stump Removal

A stump grinder can likely be rented at a cost of around £90 for a day from a nearby tool rental business. However, it is hardly a task for a novice to attempt to remove a recalcitrant tree stump.

Removing a tree stump goes as deep as knowing about the species of tree and how their roots spread out. Since a skilled tree surgeon has already done the research, they will know precisely how to extract the tree stump in the best way possible.

Stump grinding expenses vary. It depends on the size and type of the tree, as well as whether the surgeon should also remove the stump when cutting down the tree.

Hedge Trimming

Hedges are more prevalent than trees in the gardens of typical homeowners. To accommodate this, arborists have expanded their services to include the maintenance of fences and shrubs.

Hedge trimming typically costs around £90 per hour. However, the cost can increase to £120 if the arborist also requires some height-related equipment. 

Hedge Removal

The hedge’s depth, length, and root structure affect the price of removal. A small fence between 2 and 4 cm long will typically cost around £150 to $350 to remove. The price of clearing out the trash is also included in this estimate. In contrast, it might cost somewhere between £250 and £450 to remove a noticeable hedge. In addition to the usual expenses, you will need to set aside money for an excavator to get rid of the roots.


“Copse” refers to a group of trees that produce new growth from the stumps or roots, and coppicing is the process of removing these shoots.

Almost no one can perform the ancient technique of coppicing, which is used to manage woodlands. You will require the knowledge and expertise of a tree surgeon to complete this project properly. In order to make room for younger shoots, you must periodically remove the older ones.

The thicket’s size affects how much coppicing will cost. The cost is also influenced by when the last maintenance was performed. This can be completed in one day for about £500 with a team of two or three workers.

Tree Survey

A tree survey is beneficial because it offers insightful data regarding the trees. The land or property owner benefits from tree surveys. When planning authorities submit applications for planning permission, arborists also provide surveys for those agencies. An arborist must invest a lot of time in their research before conducting a tree survey. The research entails examining various trees and compiling the results into a report. The number and types of trees in the area will determine how much a tree survey will cost. Although prices can vary greatly, a starting point of about $250 is generally accepted.

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UK Regulations & Qualifications for Tree Surgery: Guidelines

While performing tree surgeries, a tree surgeon in the UK is required to abide by a number of rules. All of the surgeons at Bark have these credentials and adhere to the rules set forth by the UK government.


A trustworthy surgeon must be a member of at least one reputable professional organisation. A tree surgeon may be a member of the Arboricultural Association (AA) or the International Society of Arboriculture. At Bark, every arborist is a member of at least one of the associations listed above.

The Arboricultural Association also offers optional programmes like the ARB Approved Contractor and the AA Registered Consultant Directory. To provide a list of authorised arborists and tree surgeons in the UK, these voluntary schemes collaborate with the government-endorsed Trustmark Scheme. Bark makes sure that all of its arborists and tree surgeons are listed on these lists.

In the UK, qualifications for tree surgery are governed by the National Proficiency Tests Council (NPTC). The regulatory body is an expert in City and Guilds’ “Land-Based” certifications. Anyone needs these qualifications to become a tree surgeon or arborist.

The minimum qualifications every tree surgeon must have to practice in the UK include

  • Work First Aid
  • CS30 – Chainsaw Maintenance, Basic Cross-Cutting, and On-Site Preparation
  • CS31 – Processing and Felling Small Trees
  • CS38 – Do an aerial rescue by climbing a tree
  • CS39 – Chainsaw use from a rope and harness

Although not the only requirements, these form the bare minimum for any tree surgeon wishing to work in the UK. On the official site for NPTC, there are a lot more NPTC qualifications available. Additionally, the Royal Forestry Society organises more complicated certifications.

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UK Regulations

For the benefit of arborists and clients, the Arboricultural Association’s website offers thorough information on the laws governing trees, working at heights, and tree surgery. On the Planning Portal website, you can also find more pertinent information regarding trees and hedging. Additionally, this website offers important details on tree preservation orders and trees in conservation areas.

Typically, a Tree Preservation Order (TPO) is issued by the local government to protect a particular tree.

Groups of trees and woodlands that are specifically intended to benefit the neighbourhood or the local ecology are included in the order. A TPO limits certain behaviours that could endanger trees. These actions include

  • Felling
  • Lopping
  • Cutting roots
  • Topping
  • Uprooting

It is a punishable offence to cause damage to trees without the permission of the planning authority. The planning authority reserves the right to specify conditions when it permits arborists. You can find the entire legislation in the Town and Country Planning Regulations 2012.

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Tree Surveys: All The Prices and Criteria 

In accordance with “BS5837:2012 Trees in relation to Construction, Design, and Demolition,” UK tree surveys.

The survey provides a report on tree constraints. In the designated study area, this report identifies specific trees and tree species. The report also specifies:

  • Canopy spread
  • Quality grading (whether high, medium or low or unsuitable for retention)
  • Root protection area
  • Height

You will also discover that a Tree Constraints Plan results from these specifications. The plan identifies trees that should be kept. Additionally, the plan includes a drawing of these trees that the local authority will use when submitting a planning application.

Any existing Conservation Areas or Tree Presentation Orders on the neighbouring or proposed site are also noted in the arborist’s report and plan.

The cost of the work is calculated by the arborist surveyor. The cost is additionally affected by the species and site accessibility. A routine, professionally completed tree survey, on the other hand, runs between £250 and £350, including VAT.

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FAQs Regarding Tree Surgeon 

How Can One Tell if a Tree Has a Disease?

A tree removal specialist can use several signs to determine a diseased tree. An expert can only spot some signs. However, there are other signs that an ordinary person can use to determine if a tree has a disease. Here are a few details that someone who has little knowledge of tree health can use to get trees inspected.

  • Dead branches: Damaged trees usually have dead branches that break easily. If you notice such signs, you can suspect there’s a problem with the tree. You can call a specialist to check it out in such a scenario.
  • Decayed Portions: A healthy tree usually decays from the inside out. If you notice a decayed portion of your tree, you should get worried because it could mean the tree is infected. You should inform tree professionals such as those from Bark to perform checkups on the tree.
  • Discoloured leaves: Another symptom that alerts you of potential tree infection is leaf discolouration. If your tree has discoloured leaves, there’s likely a problem. However, deciduous trees typically shed leaves in autumn after turning brown. Hence, you cannot consider such a process a problem. However, if you notice the colour change in early spring, you may have to alert tree removal specialists to check it out.
  • Deep Cracks: A healthy tree does not have deep cracks in its bark. Instead, the bark is usually continuous without holes. If you notice any bark anomalies, you may have to call a tree service to check if there’s a problem.
  • Unsightly Architecture: Most trees have a symmetrical main trunk. If you notice that your tree appears different from others, you should call a tree specialist. Before drawing conclusions, you should compare your tree trunk with more than one trunk.

Can I Remove a Tree Myself?

It all depends on the tree’s location. You cannot just remove trees without permission from the local government or the tree owner. You should not remove trees on someone’s land. Additionally, it is not a good idea to remove wild trees. These trees may belong to a conservation area and not your property. You can remove the tree if it is in your garden and does not require a ladder. If the tree height requires a ladder, you should call in a specialist from Bark to do it for you. A bark specialist will advise you on how best to remove the tree. You will also enjoy free estimates if you need to remove the tree. Note that it is a dangerous task to embark on tree removal by yourself.

Is It Good to Cut Down Trees?

Cutting down trees is not a wise decision. Here are a few reasons why cutting down trees is not a good idea.

  1. An area that was once vibrant becomes devoid of vegetation due to constant tree cutting. Since many vegetation types rely on trees for food, shade, and soil management, it becomes a problem.
  2. All plants, particularly trees, take in atmospheric carbon dioxide and turn it into oxygen. Therefore, the complete removal of trees could make global warming worse. The variations in humidity and temperature may have fatal consequences.
  3. Many trees in the United Kingdom are centuries old. Several organisms whose lives depend on trees may suffer if trees in a conservation area are cut down.
  4. Trees are ornamental and serve to beautify the environment. Additionally, trees improve the quality of our lives.

How Long Does a Dead Tree Stand?

A dead tree might remain standing for about two to three years, depending on its moisture content and soil type. You may not even realise the tree is dead until it begins to wilt. Simply put, a dead tree will continue to stand until it falls.

What Is the Best Way to Save Money on Tree Removal Costs?

While expert arborists prefer to work with a knowledgeable team when removing trees, you can offer to assist with the project. Keep the big branches for firewood even if you aren’t allowed to cut down the tree to save money. You can also use the chipped foliage as garden mulch. An arborist usually pays to get rid of these. Offering to keep these will therefore enable you to save some cash.

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What Rope Type Do Tree Removal Contractors Use?

Companies that remove trees use two different kinds of rope. One yarn is used for climbing, and the other is used for rigging. These ropes have various characteristics. Consequently, they cannot be switched. When working on projects, tree services always use the best ropes because they are aware of this secret.

Climbing ropes are a tool that arborists use to help clients ascend and descend from a tree. Furthermore, while pruning or cutting trees, arborists secure themselves with ropes. Arborists use climbing ropes with the BS EN 1891 design. You will see the number stamped on the rope alongside one for identification purposes.

Arborists usually follow the guidelines set by the UK Health and Safety Executive (HSE) when climbing ropes. The guidelines state that ideal ropes for climbing should range between 10mm and 14mm in diameter. Also, these ropes have to undergo routine tests to determine their safety.

The tree limbs are lowered to the ground using rigging ropes. Rigging ropes are not used for climbing by arborists; rather, they are only used for this. This rope does not stretch, making it unsuitable for use as a climbing rope. Keep in mind that rigging ropes lack the BS EN backing. The result is that you cannot use them as PPE, or personal protective equipment. These ropes meet the safe working load (SWL) or minimum breaking strain (MBS) standard rather than the BS EN rating. One or both values will have an identification number on the rope visible to you.

Can I Perform Tree Trimming Services?

It is advisable not to perform tree trimming if you have to use a ladder. You can trim a medium-sized tree, which does not require using a ladder.

How Much Does Tree Removal Cost?

Tree removal may vary depending on the surgeon and the type of task at hand. A tree stump’s removal costs less than pruning a tree. The tree species also determines the price charged by the tree service. A tree service may charge more when working on a palm tree and more when working on an oak tree. Note also that tree removal costs much more for large trees than for smaller ones. A tree removal service may also charge more for grinding and land clearing.

Must I Remove a Diseased Tree?

No. You can start by allowing the arborists to do their inspection. Sometimes, they can use a chemical treatment to nurse the tree back to health. If not, you can remove the tree to avoid spreading the disease.

How Much Does a Tree Surgeon Cost?

A tree surgeon will charge you based on the task at hand. Also, the tree removal cost may depend on the type of tree you need to work on. The tree removal cost can range from £100 to £300.

Where Can I Get the Best Tree Service to Remove Trees for Me?

There are many arborist companies on the market. However, a reputable tree service ensures you enjoy the most professional services available. A professional tree service can help you remove large trees with ease.

Furthermore, a good tree service can give you top-tier advice on how to go about your tree removal problems. One such excellent company is Bark. Bark offers good services at affordable rates.

How Can I Find a Tree Surgeon?

You can easily find a tree surgeon on several reputable platforms that link potential clients to their arborists. One such service is Bark. This service offers good services at an average cost that beats the pricing provided by others. You will find that the cost of tree removal at Bark is very affordable when compared to other brands. Furthermore, the brand helps to stop tree diseases from spreading to nearby trees.

What Should I Do if I Notice a Diseased Tree?

The first thing you should do when you notice a diseased tree is to inform the tree’s owner. You can also advise them to reach out to professional tree surgeons to discuss the following line of action. If the tree belongs to you, the best step is to call an experienced and licensed arborist to offer their opinion on the issue. Always remember to patronise licenced arborists to avoid problems with the authorities.

Get the Cost of Tree Surgeries from Local Tree Surgeons

While you can remove some trees in your front yard without help, you may need one when considering a big tree. Most homeowners do not know how to get the best deals from their local tree surgeons. At Bark, you can rest assured that the professionals will remove the tree at affordable rates. The cost of tree removal from this service will help you cut costs compared to other brands.

One good thing about this service is that it can remove trees in confined spaces without breaking a sweat. In addition, they have the backing of the local council. The service also performs stump grinding, pruning, trimming, and other services at affordable rates.

If you want to remove trees while saving money, you should consider hiring an arborist from Bark to help you out.

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