• The Association of Tree Officers (ATO)

    The Association of Tree Officers (ATO)

    Representing the views and concerns of tree officers nationwide
  • The Association of Tree Officers (ATO)

    The Association of Tree Officers (ATO)

    Representing the views and concerns of tree officers nationwide
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Welcome to The Association of Tree Officers Website

The Association of Tree Officers (ATO) will promote, support and represent Tree Officers. Administrative control of ATO will be undertaken by the ATO Directors, supported by the National Co-ordinator, Becky Porter.

Current ATO members

Latest News

Bookings are now open: https://pheedloop.com/ntoc2021/site/home/

Building on the success of five highly successful previous conferences, we’re delighted to announce that the sixth National Tree Officers Conference is being held online in November 2021. Tickets are £35 for the two day conference.

The National Tree Officers Virtual Conference 2021 is proudly organised by the London Tree Officers Association (LTOA), the Municipal Tree Officers’ Association (MTOA), the Association of Tree Officers (ATO) and facilitated by the Institute of Chartered Foresters.

This 2-day event, developed by Tree Officers for Tree Officers, is a fantastic opportunity for tree, woodland and planning officers to learn from their peers about the latest research, best practice and innovation in different areas of local authority arboricultural and urban forestry work.

With several exciting presentations lined up featuring content presented by expert arboricultural and urban forestry professionals, this is set to be a fantastic event. The National Tree Officers Virtual Conference 2021 will be a great opportunity to learn more about the latest developments in arboricultural and urban forestry work.

Presentations

THE USE OF TREE DATA FOR MANAGEMENT AND POLITICAL INFLUENCE

Jon Ryan, Arboricultural Manager at London Borough of Islington

Jon is the Arboricultural Manager for Islington Council, where he has worked since 2008. He has over thirty years’ experience working in arboriculture, starting as a grounds man in late 80’s, working as a tree surgeon for nearly 20 years until deciding to become a tree officer. He has presented at conferences and seminars on urban tree management and will talk to anyone who’ll listen about trees.

THE EFFECTIVENESS OF THE PLANNING PROCESS ON DELIVERING TREE PLANTING ON RESIDENTIAL DEVELOPMENTS

Meg Garwood, Senior Arboricultural Consultant at Essex County Council

Meg has worked in arboriculture for six years, progressing from a junior consultant position. She now oversees a team of six, managing the Essex County Council tree portfolio in addition to external clients. Meg deals with developments from both a planning application and planning consultee perspective, which has given her a broad understanding of the planning process. Meg has completed a Master’s degree in Arboriculture and Urban Forestry and graduated from Myerscough College in 2021.

ACTIVATING THE STRATEGY - A PARTICIPATORY MODEL OF STAKEHOLDER ENGAGEMENT

Aidan ffrench, Landscape Architect at Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council

A past president of the Irish Landscape Institute with more than 35 years’ experience, Aidan’s portfolio includes design projects, master-planning, social-housing and trees/planning. Aidan has presented at international conferences, and had articles published in several journals. An outdoor enthusiast, photographer, singer and amateur actor, when not designing places, you’ll find him relaxing in one (usually by the sea)!

TREES AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS

Sarah Hanson, Natural Environment Officer at Reading Borough Council

Following a degree in Environment Biology, Sarah was offered a job in the Planning Department at Reading Borough Council dealing with tree and landscape matters. Several arboricultural qualifications and 21 years later, she is still there. She represents the Thames Valley Tree Officers Forum, liaising with Tree Officers from across the UK. Outside Council work, she is a committee member for the Wokingham District Veteran Tree Association – a local organisation who record and campaign for the protection of culturally and historically important trees.

SHARE THE SOIL – FINDING COMPROMISE BETWEEN TREES AND DEVELOPMENT

Joel Smith, Tree Inspector, Urban Forestry, Portland Parks & Recreation, City of Portland, Oregon, USA

Joel began a career in tree care as a groundman, climber, and spray technician while completing a Bachelor’s degree in landscape management. Several private tree care industry jobs eventually led to his current position as a Tree Inspector for the City of Portland, where he has worked since 2014. This position currently focuses on navigating tree preservation and tree planting requirements in association with development projects on city-owned and public property.

ENGLAND TREES ACTION PLAN AND DUTY TO CONSULT

Jim Smith MICFor, National Urban Forestry Adviser at Forestry Commission

Jim has been an urban forester for more than 35 years. He first worked for the Forestry Commission on leaving school and returned to London to work as an arborist in the Royal Parks in the early 1980s. He has twice been Chair of the London Tree Officer’s Association, being involved in the production of many national and regional guidance documents involving trees. A member of the British Standards Institute committee on standards for trees, Jim was appointed the London Tree and Woodland Framework Manager in 2006 and is now the Forestry Commission’s National Urban Forestry Adviser.

AN UPDATE ON THE NEW LEVEL 4 AND LEVEL 6 ARBORICULTURAL APPRENTICESHIPS

Ajay Joshi, Tree Services Manager at London Borough of Lambeth

In addition to leading a team of Tree Officers, Ajay has recently completed a project to bring tree maintenance operations in-house which he now is also responsible for managing. Following 13 years at Bedford Borough Council where he managed the Tree Service, Joel moved back to London four years ago. He worked as a self-employed arborist prior to becoming a Tree Officer, and is currently involved with the Arboriculture and Forestry Trailblazer Sub Group for the Trailblazer Apprenticeship project, representing the London Tree Officer’s Association and is also on the LTOA’s Horse Chestnut Bleeding Canker Working Party.

ASH DIEBACK – THE PUBLIC VS PRIVATE CHALLENGE

Caroline Parker, Ash Dieback Project Manager at West Sussex County Council

Caroline is an internationally experienced Environmentalist, who has worked within the public, private and voluntary sectors. She has expertise in natural capital, biodiversity net gain, planning policy, government and stakeholder relations, along with environmental campaign and advocacy experience in the fields of forestry, natural resource, conservation and protected area management. Her proven success in building capability of individuals, organisations and communities to influence positive change is combined with a passionate and focused approach to address sustainable natural resource management at landscape scale.

HORSE CHESTNUT BLEEDING CANKER – UNDERSTANDING AND MANAGING THE IMPACTS ON OUR LARGEST AMENITY TREE

Andy Tipping MICFor, Trees & Woodlands Manager at London Borough of Barnet

Andy has been working in local government since 1995. He is a Chartered Arboriculturist with the Institute of Chartered Foresters and qualifications include Professional Diploma in Arboriculture (Level 6). He has contributed to LTOA publications including ‘Risk Limitation Strategy’ and CAVAT and has worked on ‘BS 8545, Joint Mitigation Protocol’ and was one of the principal authors of ‘National Tree Safety Group: Common Sense Risk Management of Trees’. Andy is an Executive Member of LTOA and former Chair – his main interests are urban trees, especially regarding defending unjustified removal demands in subsidence cases.

ARE FUNGI ADAPTING THEIR PRIMARY HOST PREFERENCES DUE TO CLIMATE AND/OR HABITAT CHANGE?

David Humphries, Trees Management Officer at City of London

David has been observing trees and their fungi associations for more than thirty-five years. He leads an in-house team, managing 30,000 trees undertaking inspections, tree health care, safety and veteran tree management. In 2020, he was recognised for his work in receiving the London Tree Officers Association Individual Commitment Award, at the Forestry Commission’s London Tree and Woodland Awards “showing consistent dedication and commitment” to protecting London’s trees.

ATO Events Calendar