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Foundations near trees The discussion on construction near trees, generated by the paper in the issue of 16 August 1994 (Building near trees - the development of NHBC standards for the foundations of low-rise dwellings) has generated divergent views from members. Should we design to prevent all visible signs of ground movement in our buildings or should the cost-effectiveness of accepting minor cracking be a more prominent consideration? To what extent would the public go along with us, bearing in mind that they are the ultimate paymasters even if insurance cover spreads the costs? With the current arguments regarding the excessive cost of construction, should we do more to influence public opinion? Verulam