How does your [front] garden grow?

Thinking of making some changes to the appearance of your front garden? There may be a few things to consider before sacrificing those flower beds for a new driveway.

With a quarter of front gardens in the South East now covered with non-permeable surfaces, our choice of paving for front gardens is having a greater impact on our natural and urban environment. Not only is the risk of flooding to your property and pollution in our natural waterways increased, but it can also negatively affect the street scene.

What you may not realise is that legislation is in place that requires planning permission to pave over more than 5 metres of your garden with non-permeable surfaces, such as tarmac, concrete or flag paving.

Examples of permeable surfaces that do not require planning permission are grass, pavers on a sand bed or loose gravel (exceptions may apply if you live within a conservation area).

Not only will the appearance of your house and street improve with the planting of shrubs and trees, they are important for the ongoing battle against climate change. Redbridge Council supports the planting of trees in front gardens under their Pound for Pound Scheme – so if the tree will be visible from the street, the Council may pay half the cost.

Visit the Redbridge Council website for more guidance on this legislation and ideas on how to give your front garden an environmentally friendly makeover.

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