Privacy notice for tree safety and overgrown vegetation

Who is collecting and using your personal data?

Devon County Council (DCC) is a Data Controller under Data Protection Legislation and our ICO registration number is Z6475582.  This privacy notice concerns the processing of personal data that takes place by the Council for the purposes of managing tree safety.

This notice explains what information we collect, why we collect it and how we keep it secure. It also explains your rights and our legal obligation. Should you wish to find out more about Devon County Council’s data protection policies please contact our Data Protection Officer.

We will notify you of any changes to this privacy notice.

This privacy notice was last updated on 15 August 2023. If we use your personal data for any new purposes, updates will be made to the policy information and changes communicated, where necessary in accordance with current data protection legislation. For any queries relating to this privacy notice please contact the Data Protection Officer.

How will we use your personal data?

For us to be able to contact you it may be necessary for us to receive your personal data indirectly from land registry, district council and other holders of property ownership information.

We collect your personal data directly via an online reply form, email or paper form returned by post.

The council only uses IT systems for these purposes which are supplied under a contract and where the security has been assessed. Find out more about the council’s security arrangements.

What information do we collect?

We may collect and store records about you which may include your:

  • name
  • address
  • email address

We may collect information about the property you own, such as Land Registry documents.

We may also collect information about your tree management arrangements, such as copies of tree inspection reports and confirmation of works completed, which you or your contractor supplies us with. We store this information against the relevant records in our database.

Why do we collect and use your personal data?

We are collecting your personal data for the following purposes:

  • In order to be able to accurately identify the owners of trees, hedges and other vegetation which the County Council as Highway Authority believes present an immediate or potential hazard or obstruction to highway users.
  • So that we can maintain contact and work with you in future should we believe action is required to maintain your trees, hedges and other vegetation in a safe condition for public safety.
  • So that we can invoice you for our reasonable costs in surveying and/or remedial action to remove the hazard or obstruction if you have not taken action yourself when requested by us to do so under S154 of the Highways Act 1980.

The legal basis for us collecting your personal data

We rely upon the following laws to process your personal data:

  • The Highways Act 1980.

The lawful grounds for processing your personal data under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is Article 6(1)(e) for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest

We may also need to share some personal data about you so that we can support third party organisations to discharge their regulatory requirements. This includes organisations such as:

  • the data protection regulator (the Information Commissioner’s Office)
  • the Care Quality Commission

We may also share information to enable us to comply with court orders and other legal obligations. If this is necessary, we will only share the minimum amount of personal data needed for this purpose.

Who will we share your personal data with?

In order to deliver services it may be necessary for us to share your personal data with the following organisations or partners:

  • Devon County Council Term Maintenance Contractor (currently Milestone Infrastructure).
  • Devon County Council tree framework contractors.
  • Ecologists engaged by us to support the work of the tree contractors.
  • Other authorities that may have a licensing interest in any work we require to be done including district councils, Natural England, Forestry Commission.

How long will we hold your personal data?

Devon County Council will retain your personal data for only as long as is necessary, and in line with our organisation’s record retention schedules.

Your data protection rights

Under Data Protection Legislation, you have the right to obtain a copy of their personal records held by us, this is called a Subject Access Request (SAR).

International transfers

DCC does not intend to transfer any personal data that is processed for any of the purposes outlined in this notice, to countries outside of the territorial scope of UK data protection laws.


If you have any comments, queries or complaints about this privacy notice or the processing of your personal data please contact our Data Protection Officer.

Alternatively, if you are not happy with the way that DCC is handling your personal data, you are entitled to appeal to the Information Commissioners Office (ICO). The Information Commissioners Office enforces and oversees the Data Protection Regulations.

Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane


Automated decisions

DCC does not intend to take any automated decisions regarding any personal data that is processed for any of the purposes outlined in this notice.