Neighbour wants me to trim trees

Neighbour wants me to trim trees

Postby badgerswithafros » Tue Jul 23, 2013 9:01 pm

Came across this site when searching for some advice.

Brief background: At the end of my garden, beyond the fence, there is a small river/stream with steep embankments either side. Our fence is before the embankment but I do technically own the land to the middle of the river. The embankment has heavy foliage and mature trees on it. Directly across the stream there is the side of a 3 storey townhouse which is part of a new development (appox. 5 years old). I have received a letter from the development's management company:

"Dear Sir/Madam,

We are the management company for 'development name'. We are writing on behalf of the residents at No. 'XX development name' who are concerned with the size of the trees on your side of the river. Residents have advised us one tree in particular is inches from their roof and we would ask that you arrange to have them trimmed.

If you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact our office"


So where do i stand? I am quite concerned that i now have to pay to get this done (I imagine it would be expensive due to restricted access and tall trees). I have absolutely no objection to them trimming anything and everything that overhangs into their site as necessary, but do I legally have to cover the cost for this? Am I able to just reply stating that I give them permission to do anything they wish with branches that overhang into their site, and not actually have to pay for this myself. Obviously with this being a management company and not the resident, it all feels quite legal and impersonal already. Would rather the resident had come straight to me and we could have maybe come to some sort of arrangement.

Thanks for taking time to read this, any advice would be greatly appreciated.
badgerswithafros
 
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:12 am

Ads are not endorsed by www.gardenlaw.co.uk or the staff thereof and visitors should perform their own due diligence on the product or service offered.
 

Re: Neighbour wants me to trim trees

Postby arsie » Wed Jul 24, 2013 1:13 pm

It is fairly common knowledge that you are allowed to trim any vegetation, trees etc growing on neighbours' land that are over your land. The management company will be well aware of that but anxious to avoid the expense as getting to your tree must be difficult. So they are passing the buck. If the branches keep growing and caused damage I suppose you would be liable? Hmmm.
arsie
 
Posts: 1955
Joined: Wed Apr 21, 2010 9:13 am
Location: Norfolk

Re: Neighbour wants me to trim trees

Postby badgerswithafros » Wed Jul 24, 2013 1:47 pm

arsie wrote:It is fairly common knowledge that you are allowed to trim any vegetation, trees etc growing on neighbours' land that are over your land. The management company will be well aware of that but anxious to avoid the expense as getting to your tree must be difficult. So they are passing the buck. If the branches keep growing and caused damage I suppose you would be liable? Hmmm.


Exactly my thoughts. And the mention of the branches near the roof does make me think they are trying to put any future liability onto myself, thus putting more pressure on me to deal with it.
badgerswithafros
 
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:12 am

Re: Neighbour wants me to trim trees

Postby despair » Wed Jul 24, 2013 2:00 pm

It is upsetting to receive such an officious letter. It hardly encourages good neighbourliness.
As said by others :--

They can quite legally cut back all overhanging foliage to the boundary but no further
( might be a good idea to download copies of both deeds from http://www.landregistry.gov.uk for £5 each to see whats said about the actual boundaries
They should offer back the arisings which you can decline leaving them to dispose

Its up to them to find a tree surgeon with a Cherry Picker or other suitable equipment to do the work or come to an agreement with you for access

It is possible they could require you to abate the nuisance of your trees if the roof is damaged.
I believe the onus was on developer and planners to have sited the new building more sensibly than a wall on the top of a river bank
despair
 
Posts: 16040
Joined: Mon Mar 14, 2005 8:07 am

Re: Neighbour wants me to trim trees

Postby arsie » Wed Jul 24, 2013 5:12 pm

It might be worth a few ("15 minutes free"?) minutes of solicitor time to explore the options.

I don't like the suggestion to simply ignore the letter. I personally would prefer to push back - with confidence in what I do!

There must be a shed load of precedence for this sort of situation - legal beavers????
arsie
 
Posts: 1955
Joined: Wed Apr 21, 2010 9:13 am
Location: Norfolk

Re: Neighbour wants me to trim trees

Postby badgerswithafros » Wed Jul 24, 2013 7:01 pm

Having a quick telephone chat with my solicitor tomorrow about this, so will see what they suggest.

Turns out my next door neighbour got exactly the same letter, and his trees only grow across the boundary into the garden of the house behind, nowhere near the actual house.
badgerswithafros
 
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:12 am

Re: Neighbour wants me to trim trees

Postby badgerswithafros » Mon Jul 29, 2013 3:17 pm

Well, solicitor has cleared things up nicely....... not! They kinda laughed the letter off. They "think" (would rather they "knew"!) that since the letter doesn't directly state that the tree is posing a risk to the house (which it's not, as there are only a few young branches actually near the house), then there is no legal reason to get them cut or to be concerned about future liability. They advised me to reply stating that I give them full permission to trim/cut back any parts of the tree that have grown across the boundary, and that I claim no ownership to the removed branches and that they can use/dispose of them as they wish.
badgerswithafros
 
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:12 am

Re: Neighbour wants me to trim trees

Postby stufe35 » Mon Jul 29, 2013 5:01 pm

That looks like good advice to me.

If you are confident the trees are safe, then all is well.

Your solicitor is telling them they can co as they are legally entitled.
stufe35
 
Posts: 781
Joined: Mon Nov 05, 2012 4:06 pm

Ads are not endorsed by www.gardenlaw.co.uk or the staff thereof and visitors should perform their own due diligence on the product or service offered.
 

Return to Trees

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest