Adverse possession of damaged retaining wall?

Re: Adverse possession of damaged retaining wall?

Postby arborlad » Mon Jul 24, 2017 6:39 pm

MacadamB53 wrote:
arborlad wrote:
Dolbette wrote:Their house was indeed built first, .




That's unusual for a terraced house, can you explain how it came about?.......how old are the properties?
not that unusual -




................it is in my experience............
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Re: Adverse possession of damaged retaining wall?

Postby Dolbette » Thu Jul 27, 2017 7:23 am

The house was built first because the parcels of land on this street were owner by different people. Our neighbouring house would have been the end terrace and then ours was built butted up to it a few years later. They are saying that the wall has always been on the outside of their boundary, but that it is theirs and has to be there. However, since the wall was built on the outside of their property, it seems like it's become ours because it's outside of their boundary and inside of ours. I guess over 100 years ago builders weren't too particular about boundaries and it was simply built in the wrong place, or they couldn't be bothered to move it once a house had gone up next to it. The neighbours say it was built in order to build our house, as the land level is higher and so therefore it is our duty to maintain the wall and retain their land. However, the 'T' mark on the title plan clearly states that the boundary responsibility is theirs and the deeds state that a wall (of a specified height and thickness) has to be erected on the side marked 'T'.

In court this week, at the injunction hearing, the female neighbour sat in front of a judge and stated that "The wall is on their land". Yet they contest ownership of it, essentially saying that even though it's on our land, it's theirs and we don't have the right to touch it. Funnily enough, until we wanted to take it down, she has always been under the belief that it's ours. The injunction was granted because all the judge could go on was their complaint (they submitted no evidence with it), which - to be honest - is full of lies (which we have evidenced in photos, which we will submit with our witness statements).

There is no way it can remain, it is physically dangerous. We can't let our children out into the garden because of it.

It seems that a survey from the chartered surveyor is warranted, so he can definitively say who's boundary the wall sits within and also interpret the deeds. I cannot find any easements or covenants in the deeds pertaining to that wall - and since the title plan states a 'T' on their side, I cannot see how the deeds could stipulate that we are responsible for the boundary in any way.
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Re: Adverse possession of damaged retaining wall?

Postby arborlad » Thu Jul 27, 2017 9:42 am

Dolbette wrote: Since our houses are joined, I'm struggling to see that part of their land is inside our roofline.

Thanks for any input, I really do appreciate it.




I think your surveyor is wrong, unless there are circumstances we are unaware of, that is the reality of it - they own the wall, the land it occupies and the air above it.

When the wall was built 100 years ago, if it was built on land not owned by the developer, that was the time for the then landowner to take action about it.

A wall is always going to have a greater value than a fence, an offer to partly fund a suitable replacement is going to be better received than threats to replace it with a fence.
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Re: Adverse possession of damaged retaining wall?

Postby Dolbette » Thu Jul 27, 2017 10:23 am

Thanks for that, good points to consider... the neighbours have said that the wall is on our land, they are under this impression and always have been (that the land is ours), they deny it's on their land as it falls within our roofline. If this is the case, can they be forced to admit ownership of the land and the wall on it? Also, wouldn't there be something in our title deeds which stipulates that the strip of land the wall is on is theirs? The title plan has a straight line inbetween our properties, no slight dog leg where the wall starts next to our houses. I know title plans are notoriously inaccurate, so can't be 100% relied upon, so not sure how they help.

The title deed has a definite 'T' on their side and the deeds state that a wall must be on the side marked 'T' and forever maintained by the house on the side of the 'T'. If it's ruled to be theirs, on their land, where do we stand as far as getting it replaced or fixed? It's dangerous and cannot indefinitely remain as it is, as it's a wonder it hasn't already fallen down!

Am I allowed to insert video links into these posts? I uploaded an unlisted video to YouTube of the entire damaged area of wall, shows exactly the state of the wall and what we're dealing with.
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Re: Adverse possession of damaged retaining wall?

Postby arborlad » Thu Jul 27, 2017 12:37 pm

Dolbette wrote:Am I allowed to insert video links into these posts? I uploaded an unlisted video to YouTube of the entire damaged area of wall, shows exactly the state of the wall and what we're dealing with.




Photos or a video are always welcome to give a better understanding of the situation, however, there is an unresolved court case connected with this wall so I would caution against it - others may think differently.
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Re: Adverse possession of damaged retaining wall?

Postby MacadamB53 » Thu Jul 27, 2017 3:24 pm

Hi Dolbette,

at the scale used on the map only a dogleg measured in feet, rather than inches might have been plotted by the mapmaker - because the thickness of the lines used on the map represent many inches in the real world.

basically, your shared boundary isn't a lovely straight line - there this "kink" - mad as you think that is.

Kind regards, Mac
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Re: Adverse possession of damaged retaining wall?

Postby Dolbette » Thu Jul 27, 2017 6:59 pm

Thanks Mac... so if there is indeed a dogleg, how is that proved as there isn't anything in the Deeds to state it's there and as you say, the plans are too inaccurate, plus the neighbours say it's on our land? I'm genuinely baffled by this.

At the end of the day, the resolution we want is a fixed wall - so if it is proved that it's theirs, so be it, but then how do we go about getting it fixed?

Many thanks :-)
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Re: Adverse possession of damaged retaining wall?

Postby ukmicky » Fri Jul 28, 2017 12:30 am

Dolbette wrote:The house was built first because the parcels of land on this street were owner by different people. Our neighbouring house would have been the end terrace and then ours was built butted up to it a few years later. They are saying that the wall has always been on the outside of their boundary, but that it is theirs and has to be there. However, since the wall was built on the outside of their property, it seems like it's become ours because it's outside of their boundary and inside of ours. I guess over 100 years ago builders weren't too particular about boundaries and it was simply built in the wrong place, or they couldn't be bothered to move it once a house had gone up next to it. The neighbours say it was built in order to build our house, as the land level is higher and so therefore it is our duty to maintain the wall and retain their land. However, the 'T' mark on the title plan clearly states that the boundary responsibility is theirs and the deeds state that a wall (of a specified height and thickness) has to be erected on the side marked 'T'.

In court this week, at the injunction hearing, the female neighbour sat in front of a judge and stated that "The wall is on their land". Yet they contest ownership of it, essentially saying that even though it's on our land, it's theirs and we don't have the right to touch it. Funnily enough, until we wanted to take it down, she has always been under the belief that it's ours. The injunction was granted because all the judge could go on was their complaint (they submitted no evidence with it), which - to be honest - is full of lies (which we have evidenced in photos, which we will submit with our witness statements).

There is no way it can remain, it is physically dangerous. We can't let our children out into the garden because of it.

It seems that a survey from the chartered surveyor is warranted, so he can definitively say who's boundary the wall sits within and also interpret the deeds. I cannot find any easements or covenants in the deeds pertaining to that wall - and since the title plan states a 'T' on their side, I cannot see how the deeds could stipulate that we are responsible for the boundary in any way.
More must have been said by the judge. Did he give reasons as to why he granted the injunction. Was it an interim injunction to protect the wall until its ownership was cleared up.
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Re: Adverse possession of damaged retaining wall?

Postby Dolbette » Fri Jul 28, 2017 6:30 am

Sorry, should have said, yes it's an interim injunction. He said a survey would be necessary, but we haven't been served papers yet so don't know who will have to arrange and pay for said survey. He said we have to give the Court witness statements.
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Re: Adverse possession of damaged retaining wall?

Postby Dolbette » Fri Jul 28, 2017 7:32 am

That is, an interim injunction to stop us from taking the wall down while there is an ownership dispute.
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Re: Adverse possession of damaged retaining wall?

Postby arborlad » Fri Jul 28, 2017 9:10 am

Dolbette wrote:Thanks for that, good points to consider... the neighbours have said that the wall is on our land, they are under this impression and always have been (that the land is ours), they deny it's on their land as it falls within our roofline..




There seems to be a fundamental misunderstanding here, the wall is the established boundary feature and has stood uncontested in its current location for 100 years - there is no possibility that the wall and the land it sits on are in separate ownership.
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Re: Adverse possession of damaged retaining wall?

Postby Dolbette » Fri Jul 28, 2017 4:34 pm

arborlad wrote:
Dolbette wrote:Thanks for that, good points to consider... the neighbours have said that the wall is on our land, they are under this impression and always have been (that the land is ours), they deny it's on their land as it falls within our roofline..




There seems to be a fundamental misunderstanding here, the wall is the established boundary feature and has stood uncontested in its current location for 100 years - there is no possibility that the wall and the land it sits on are in separate ownership.


I have to admit, it baffles me too. Neighbour always said it was ours because it was on our land and yet when we want to take it down as is dangerous (which would mean then shifting the piles of earth and rocks they've put against the wall), it's theirs, but still on our land?! Still failing to see how it could be theirs, as no "dog leg" is mentioned in the deeds :|
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Re: Adverse possession of damaged retaining wall?

Postby arborlad » Sat Jul 29, 2017 11:58 am

Dolbette wrote:
arborlad wrote:
Dolbette wrote:Thanks for that, good points to consider... the neighbours have said that the wall is on our land, they are under this impression and always have been (that the land is ours), they deny it's on their land as it falls within our roofline..




There seems to be a fundamental misunderstanding here, the wall is the established boundary feature and has stood uncontested in its current location for 100 years - there is no possibility that the wall and the land it sits on are in separate ownership.


I have to admit, it baffles me too. Neighbour always said it was ours because it was on our land and yet when we want to take it down as is dangerous (which would mean then shifting the piles of earth and rocks they've put against the wall), it's theirs, but still on our land?! Still failing to see how it could be theirs, as no "dog leg" is mentioned in the deeds :|




This is not something that will be mentioned in the deeds, even more so, on the plan, it's self evident from the location of the wall. If you had something more substantial like a flying freehold over a ginnel, this will be mentioned in the deeds and shown on the plan.

The law presumes you will fence to the fullest extent of your land, your neighbours builder did that 100 years ago and there is more evidence that your neighbour owns the wall and the land it occupies than it being in your ownership.

When the wall was first built it was retaining some land, even a new replacement will have to retain some land.
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Re: Adverse possession of damaged retaining wall?

Postby jonahinoz » Thu Aug 03, 2017 7:05 am

Hi,

Asking because I don't know ...

Can Joe Public sue, demand, or whatever, that a hazard be made safe. I thought he had to wait until the hazard caused damage or injury, before he can take action.

On the other hand, the Local Authority do have the power to demand a hazard be removed or otherwise made safe. I think?

John W
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