Britain is facing a shortage of real Christmas trees due to new legislation which will increase red tape and importation costs.

That’s the claim of an artificial tree company who say that Christmas trees over three metres in height now require a plant passport to enter the UK.

The new legislation, introduced to protect UK woodland against the risk of pest and insect infestations, is expected to drive up costs of giant Christmas trees by around 200 per cent.

Around £3 million of real trees were imported last year, most commonly from Denmark, Belgium and France.

This, combined with on-going uncertainty over Brexit, is expected to have an impact on the availability of large trees.

Businesses seeking giant Christmas trees will be hardest hit by the introduction of this new tax.

Already, people are looking for options and Christmas Tree World has reported an 84 per cent increase year-on-year.