Can anyone identify my tree please

Southend, United Kingdom

We have this large tree in our garden, at a guess it's been there about 80years the previous owners were the only owners of the house and keen gardeners.
It is an evergreen tree and has small black flowers/seeds on it during the summer, we want to trim it back but are unsure how best to do this?
Thank you

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Contra Costa County, CA(Zone 9b)

I think this might be Pittosporum tennuifolium, but I am not sure if it grows in your area.
If so, pruning is very easy. It will sprout from where you cut it, even if you cut into bare wood. Usually the growth response will be several twigs from the one spot.

You could test the growth response simply by trimming one branch. Perhaps one toward the back, so if it does not respond in a way you like it does not matter.

I would not prune it with the winter coming. Wait until spring. Pruning encourages new growth and the tender new leaves can get killed by the cold.

Southend, United Kingdom

Thank you we are in the south east of England

Contra Costa County, CA(Zone 9b)

Winter hardiness is to 15-20 deg. F, or -7 to -9 deg. C.

Have you seen flowers on it? They are rather subtle. Research some images, look also for the fruit. It will grow green at first until it ripens, then split open and shed black seeds.

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