Attached wall to my cottage.

Attached wall to my cottage.

Postby MartinApples » Mon Jan 09, 2017 12:05 pm

Hi,
I am rather out of my depth with.computers/posts etc but here goes . I am an OAP, with no funds, so dare not get into a dispute if I am lumbered with costs.Briefly, my cottage is part of a terrace. The adjoining one is "staggered", so my wall defines the boundary of the neighbour's garden. He has built a 2M block wall, with a further 4 foot of trellis on top. This wall is cemented onto the "buttress" of my cottage, and to the wall of my cottage,without my knowledge or permission. My wall is irregular in the vertical, becoming concave ,before bulging out, giving rise to a slight overhang. The attached wall follows these contours,giving rise to a slightly "corballed" wall with cement infill. My cottage is old, and previous work by neighbours have cracked this wall. This attached block wall must be putting more load upon my damaged wall. The neighbour's substantial block wall also channels and traps surface runoff of rain against my wall. causing damp problems. I had repeatedly tried to talk to the neighbours about this and other issues, but am called stupid,or shouted down.making it harder and harder to face them again. On the last occasion I tried , I was forced backwards as he towered over me, screaming how he would "F...... kill me" amongst a tirade of other abuse.All this has caused problems with health. In short, have I "a case"? ....or can he just build of my wall? Advice very very much appreciated, thank you. Martin
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Re: Attached wall to my cottage.

Postby MacadamB53 » Mon Jan 09, 2017 1:04 pm

Hi Martin,

the internal wall dividing the two dwellings is a party wall and, unless the evidence suggests otherwise, this would be the same for the entire length of that wall - which would include the bit which you refer to as your wall (ie it's not your wall, it's shared).

that said, being part-owner of a party wall means any works - repairs, enhancements, replacements - to the wall you want to carry out should be done with the agreement of the other owner (unless the works are just to your side and don't affect the other).

He has built a 2M block wall, with a further 4 foot of trellis on top.

building this would require planning permission - notify your LA if it was done in the last four years.

is this a single skin wall?

Kind regards, Mac
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Re: Attached wall to my cottage.

Postby MartinApples » Mon Jan 09, 2017 3:46 pm

Hi Mac,
I'm having difficulty finding my way around the site,so not sure if I have it right. The neighbour's cottage had an extension built flush against mine,probably in the 60's. My wall is a very thick stone wall. The attached flat roofed extension "abuts" mine. Their roof is flush (flashing) against mine, but there is an air gap between us. The buttress that is built off, is purely mine. So is it the case that because we are attached elsewhere he can build anywhere along that line of my building? Does LA stand for local authority?...and would it be about the block wall,or the trellis atop it that I should contact them about? The trellis is not causing a problem, but the block wall has become, in affect a dam. This,and the extra load on my building are of concern and are causing problems. I don't want to antagonise the neighbour further, by involving anyone,in light of threats of violence, unless there is a chance of rectifying the problems.Thanks again for your time. I tried to post a photo' but lost my mail. Will try again separately to this.
Thanks Martin
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Re: Attached wall to my cottage.

Postby MartinApples » Mon Jan 09, 2017 3:56 pm

I hope this works...I'm so useless with modern technology.. losing the will to live : (
Attachments
15910359_1370098499707191_755270143_n.jpg
15910359_1370098499707191_755270143_n.jpg (133.85 KiB) Viewed 1136 times
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Re: Attached wall to my cottage.

Postby jonahinoz » Mon Jan 09, 2017 7:43 pm

Hi Martin,

On first reading that your neighbours cottage is staggered, I assumed the extension was at the front. Reading further, I changed my mind. Can you clarify.

I assume that the wall is a garden wall, not part of a habitable extension? Is the 2 metres the length of the wall, or it's height?

Mac is correct ... the 4ft high trellis on top of a 2m high wall would require planning permission. Your mail could be taken to mean that the wall is 2m high, but I have difficulty visualising trellis on top of such a wall ... but hey, it takes all sorts.

A wall or fence between gardens may be up to 2m high without planning permission, could solve his problem by removing the trellis, but that would still leave you with problem of the puddle and damp walls. I can see two ways of looking at this.

1. Where does the water come from? It shouldn't be coming from your roof ... gutters leading to a soakaway, or even mains drains, should take it away. Perhaps you have a sloping garden, in which case it's your water.

2. But whatever the source, it seems that you have an easement, documented or prescriptive, to allow your surface water to drain across your neighbours garden. You may also be receiving surface water from neighbours on the other side, which add to your puddle.

Me? I would ask my local councillor to visit. Maybe he can involve the Planners, and/or Environmental Health. Hint that a "grant" would be very welcome. Don't ask, don't get.

I'm guessing that your "old cottage" has foundations no more than 18" deep. If your neighbour dug deeper than that (he probably didn't, but your foundations could be very shallow) he should have followed the requirements of the Party Wall Act. I don't know what, if anything can be done through that channel now.

Is your house insured? If so, ask them for help. They might insist that you pay for the initial survey, which they will refund if a claim is accepted. Tell them that you can't afford it, but it will cost them more if your house subsides due to the sodden ground (Anybody ... is that likely?) Thought ... if your house subsides ... so will your neighbour's.

Did you ever wear Her Majesty's uniform? If so, contact your local chapter of the Royal British Legion for assistance. (they paid my Tech College fees when I was in my fifties). If you ever been a Civil Servant, try the Civil Service Benevolent Fund (although I found them a bit snotty, though I believe they have paid for non-subscriber's private medical treatment).

Your solicitor should chat with you for half an hour without charging, but he might charge to send a letter.

Try your local councillor first. He/she will be free. After that, speak to your insurers.

Good luck,

John W
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Re: Attached wall to my cottage.

Postby despair » Tue Jan 10, 2017 11:47 am

check every single insurance policy
credit card
union membership

for legal expenses cover
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Re: Attached wall to my cottage.

Postby MartinApples » Wed Jan 11, 2017 12:03 pm

Thank you very much for your replies,and advice. I will take some photo's,to give a clearer picture,as it's not easy to describe the situation clearly.This is only a part of the problems I've had/am having. I had naively thought that someone could not attach a wall to my house without asking,especially as the insufficiently supported extension had caused (still not repaired) damage to the same wall of my home,and this could only cause more problems.
Thank you again, Martin
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Re: Attached wall to my cottage.

Postby thin and crispy » Fri Jan 13, 2017 12:45 am

MacadamB53 wrote:the internal wall dividing the two dwellings is a party wall and, unless the evidence suggests otherwise, this would be the same for the entire length of that wall - which would include the bit which you refer to as your wall (ie it's not your wall, it's shared).

That's not necessarily true. Boundaries don't have to be straight. And if, for example, the neighbour's house was a subsequent attachment to Martin's house, only the section supporting the neighbour's house woukd become a party wall.
Prejudice, not being founded on reason, cannot be removed by argument. Samuel Johnson.
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Re: Attached wall to my cottage.

Postby MacadamB53 » Fri Jan 13, 2017 9:57 am

thin and crispy wrote:
MacadamB53 wrote:the internal wall dividing the two dwellings is a party wall and, unless the evidence suggests otherwise, this would be the same for the entire length of that wall - which would include the bit which you refer to as your wall (ie it's not your wall, it's shared).

That's not necessarily true. Boundaries don't have to be straight. And if, for example, the neighbour's house was a subsequent attachment to Martin's house, only the section supporting the neighbour's house woukd become a party wall.
guess why I included the phrase 'unless the evidence suggests otherwise'...

...that's right - because of situations like the example you give. :roll:

no worries, Mac
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Re: Attached wall to my cottage.

Postby thin and crispy » Sat Jan 14, 2017 4:01 am

MacadamB53 wrote:
thin and crispy wrote:
MacadamB53 wrote:the internal wall dividing the two dwellings is a party wall and, unless the evidence suggests otherwise, this would be the same for the entire length of that wall - which would include the bit which you refer to as your wall (ie it's not your wall, it's shared).

That's not necessarily true. Boundaries don't have to be straight. And if, for example, the neighbour's house was a subsequent attachment to Martin's house, only the section supporting the neighbour's house woukd become a party wall.
guess why I included the phrase 'unless the evidence suggests otherwise'...

...that's right - because of situations like the example you give. :roll:

no worries, Mac

Guess why I included the word 'necessarily'. No reed for the :roll: really Mac, but it's good to know we're in agreement nonetheless.
Prejudice, not being founded on reason, cannot be removed by argument. Samuel Johnson.
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Re: Attached wall to my cottage.

Postby SwitchRich » Mon Jan 16, 2017 4:54 pm

Hi Martin,
Well done on posting the photo! Really helps visualise your issue. :)
Awful to hear your neighbour is being threatening!
Perhaps you might be able sketch the layout of you house and boundaries. If you can scan and then upload the image perhaps take a photo of it and then upload that? The guys here can then advise you better.
If you were able to take other photos too it all helps build up you issue in everyone's mind so they can help you best.

Rich
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