Ash Dieback - August 20

Important updates

Ash Dieback

ash dieback

Ash dieback is a disease affecting ash trees in our countryside and towns. It threatens to wipe out over 90% of Britain’s native ash species and is likely to cause safety issues that need to be managed by landowners in high-risk areas.

Across our network in Devon we have many ash trees which if left untreated could potentially cause a significant hazard. That's why in Devon we will be removing trees infected with ash dieback that pose a risk to the highway, over the next 5 years, these works will take place in all areas.

To find out more about ash dieback please visit our dedicated website.


North Devon Link Road

We are starting a comprehensive programme of urgent tree safety works on the North Devon Link Road (A361/A39) this autumn to remove ash trees infected with ash die back disease.  This is essential work to remove potential hazards to people travelling on this route.  Ash die back is now wide spread across Devon and we have observed a significant increase in the number of trees that are infected and deteriorating in condition over this spring summer season. The Council has therefore taken the decision to remove these potential hazards on the North Devon Link Road as a priority and as soon as practically possible because it is such a busy and strategically important route. 

During the lockdown period whilst traffic was at a minimal level we did as much work as we possibly could on some of the highest traffic flow sections.  It is essential our contractors now return to complete the remainder of the work.

This second phase of work has been mobilised at short notice primarily for public safety reasons but also taking into consideration the most favourable timing for wildlife.   This gives us a short working window between 1 September and mid-November to complete the work on over 46km of the A39 and A361.

We have endeavoured to minimise disruption by working using lane closures and traffic lights where possible, rather than full road closures for the full duration of the work.   However, some disruption can be expected with traffic delays during the daytime and speed reduced to 40mph.  When there are no alternative acceptable methods of managing the traffic it will be necessary to implement full road closures with diversions on some evenings.   Signs will be placed 7 days in advance of each planned road closure.   Updated information on the work programme can be found on our dedicated webpage

If you have any further questions about these works, which the webpage does not answer please email Jackie Taylor the Project Manager.

saving devon's tree logo

Saving Devon’s Treescapes

Devon County Council is providing support for the national lottery funded ‘Saving Devon’s Treescapes’ project, which is engaging local communities around the county in planting and nurturing trees to replace those lost to ash dieback.  The intention is to secure the future for Devon’s precious treescapes through the planting of 250,000 trees over the next five years.  This initiative is being led by the Devon Wildlife Trust on behalf of the Devon Ash Dieback Resilience Forum.

We are one of the organisations that has signed-up to the Forum’s ‘3-2-1 tree replacement principle’.  This promotes the planting of 3 new trees for each felled mature ash, two if semi-mature and a single replacement for young trees.  In addition to its support for ‘Saving Devon’s Treescapes’, the County Council is also exploring opportunities for further tree planting on its own land, following some initial planting undertaken on a County Farm Estate holding in the Exe Valley last December.

More information on can be found here.

planting tree

27 August 2020

Useful linksMy Tree My Responsibility

My Tree, My Responsibility

Landowners with trees adjacent to the 8,000 miles of public highway in Devon are being encouraged to take urgent action to assess and take appropriate action to deal with infected ash trees where necessary.
Information on My Tree, My Responsibility can be found here.
Please encourage landowners in your Parish to view our dedicated ash dieback websites to educate themselves on this disease and what they need to do as landowners.


How to report a dangerous tree

What to look out for when identifying a dangerous tree can be found here.

To report a dangerous tree please use our report a problem page.

Community self helpReport a problem - tree