The industry of tree surgery is unregulated by government, and the Arboricultural Association which is the governing body for tree work in the UK, sets the standards for good practice and awards the status of Approved Contractor to those tree surgeons that meet the exacting standards in this difficult and dangerous profession.  The Approved Contractor scheme can take many months or even years before the required standards are met.  Working practices are rigorously assessed on customer service and office procedures, managers technical knowledge, standards of tree work including planting, pruning and dismantling as well as health and safety including first aid and emergency procedures. The contractor must hold full public liability and employer’s liability insurance.  All vehicles must be roadworthy with MOT, tax and insurance up to date and operators licences in place where applicable.  Evidence of continuing professional development must be seen and all employees within the company must be suitably qualified with recognisable trade qualifications for the specific tasks that they undertake.
Once a company has been assigned the status of Arboricultural Association Approved Contractor, they will be reassessed in part every 2 years and in full every 4 years.
The Directory of Registered Consultants and Approved Contractors is published each year and lists those consultants and companies who continue to meet the Association’s strict working standards on continual reassessment.  Anyone can contact the Arb Association to ask them for details of their local approved contractor.  This information can also be found on the Association’s website TM Tree Services Ltd is an Arboricultural Association Approved Contractor.