Fence on my land - must "good" side face neighbour?

Fence on my land - must "good" side face neighbour?

Postby Andrew D » Tue Jun 02, 2015 7:30 pm

We bought an old house on some rural land early 2015 and got planning permission to rebuild and erect a new 2m fence all round. During the formal Planning Application no neighbours made any objection to the plans for fencing.

In February this year we met with our neighbours as we believed the post and wire fence in place was a boundary (the boundary is "Shared" in the Deeds) and we offered to pay for the full cost of a new 2m fence to replace the post and wire for mutual privacy. This they declined and said the post and wire fence was on their land. We also felt we should erect safety fencing during the demolition but in their words - " a boundary is a boundary" and we were refused access.

Our solicitor said we could legally erect a fence on our own property. We then wrote to the neighbours saying we would now erect a fence on our land and that feather edge boards would be attached from our side as they had said we could not have access to their land. Attached to this letter was a plan of the proposals.

When we came to erect the fence our fencer again offered to erect the fence as a shared boundary (we did not know at the time he had done this). They told him that they declined this offer.

On 1st June (4 months after we first discussed the fencing with them) this neighbour told us that she should be looking at the feather edge board and not the back of the fence.

We sought the advice of the Senior Planning Enforcement Officer at the Council. He has said that as the fence is on our land and was paid for entirely by us then we can build the fence out of anything we want and that we can have the featheredge facing us if we want.

He said there is no law that compels the boards to face a neighbour and we have done exactly the right thing at all stages.

Has anyone anything further to add please?

Sorry for the ramble but this is my first post
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Re: Fence on my land - must "good" side face neighbour?

Postby span » Tue Jun 02, 2015 8:02 pm

Andrew D wrote:We sought the advice of the Senior Planning Enforcement Officer at the Council. He has said that as the fence is on our land and was paid for entirely by us then we can build the fence out of anything we want and that we can have the featheredge facing us if we want.

He said there is no law that compels the boards to face a neighbour


He right. Neighbour wrong. Feels good, don't it?
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Re: Fence on my land - must "good" side face neighbour?

Postby MacadamB53 » Tue Jun 02, 2015 8:37 pm

Hi Andrew,

it all depends on what your neighbour meant by 'should'…

whilst the planning officer is perfectly correct - your land, your fence, do as you please - does that mean you 'should' do as you please regardless?

imagine if you'd had a substandard fence built e.g. using the wrong fixings and the neighbour said "you should use the correct fixings" - they're not wrong are they…

Kind regards, Mac
PS all the best with the rebuild
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Re: Fence on my land - must "good" side face neighbour?

Postby COGGY » Tue Jun 02, 2015 9:45 pm

Hi Mac

The neighbour didn't say
"you should use the correct fixings"


They apparently said
that she should be looking at the feather edge board and not the back of the fence.


That is what we are asked to comment on.

Friendly regards
Coggy :roll:
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Re: Fence on my land - must "good" side face neighbour?

Postby span » Tue Jun 02, 2015 10:12 pm

What's all this yammer about "should"? Title says "must" - that's different.
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Re: Fence on my land - must "good" side face neighbour?

Postby despair » Fri Jun 05, 2015 8:05 pm

"he who pays the piper calls the tune "

If the neighbour would also like a "good side "

They need to pay for the additional featherboard and work to make the fence double sided

needs strong Oak or concrete posts though
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Re: Fence on my land - must "good" side face neighbour?

Postby jonahinoz » Fri Jun 12, 2015 7:35 am

Hi,

Assuming that your fence "face" is against the posts, as distinct from between the posts ...
If the posts are on your neighbours side, they could remove their post and wire fence, and claim the 3 or 4 inch wide strips between the posts. Or they could complain about any weeds growing on your strips. Petty! But probably par for the course.

Er, is the wire of your neighbours fence stapled to their side of the posts, or your side, or poked through holes drilled in the posts?

John W
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Re: Fence on my land - must "good" side face neighbour?

Postby Andrew D » Sun Jun 21, 2015 9:48 am

Many thanks for the comments.

With regard to "must" and "should" I was asking if I was legally required to have the board on their side of the fence. I now know that legally I do not have to (so "must" does not apply).

There is a strip of land (albeit about 4 inches between our fence and the post-and-wire fence behind it and, yes, they could in theory try to claim it but doubt they will.

Their wire is stapled on their side of their posts and our feather edge is nailed to our side of our posts.

With regard to them fixing feather edge to our posts (on our land) that is a legal no-no as that is "criminal damage". Apparently they can't even touch it as it is on our land and they are trespassing - so I am advised.

This could all have been solved if they had chosen to be friendly neighbours. They could still, if they wished, put a feather edge fence up on their land to replace their post and wire and have the feather edge facing them. They would then have a "good side" facing them. They don't want to pay for this - they just want to moan at what we have done.

All has gone quiet and the build goes well (thanks for the good wishes on that one!)

Thanks again for all your helpful comments
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Re: Fence on my land - must "good" side face neighbour?

Postby MacadamB53 » Sun Jun 21, 2015 1:09 pm

Hi Andrew,

With regard to them fixing feather edge to our posts (on our land) that is a legal no-no as that is "criminal damage"

whether criminal damage has occurred will have to involve more than just fixing something to a fencepost.

Kind regards, Mac
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Re: Fence on my land - must "good" side face neighbour?

Postby arborlad » Sun Jun 21, 2015 2:59 pm

Andrew D wrote:With regard to "must" and "should" I was asking if I was legally required to have the board on their side of the fence. I now know that legally I do not have to (so "must" does not apply).



The main purpose of a boundary feature is to define and secure the land of its owner, a featheredge fence with the posts and rails on the owners side does this best.

I seldom use the word 'must' on this forum, except in the situation of how a boundary feature relates to the boundary. In the case of a wholly owned fence ( which is invariably the best) it must abut the boundary, in the case of a shared boundary feature it must sit astride it.
Last edited by arborlad on Sun Jun 21, 2015 3:54 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Fence on my land - must "good" side face neighbour?

Postby Roblewis » Sun Jun 21, 2015 3:42 pm

Of course if the post and wire fence is their boundary then they too should not have any direct claim to ownership of any land beyond their fence. Place a gate at the far end of your fence to access the 4 inch strip then there can be no claim for AP. If this was the developers post and wire fence then the normal convention among those developers I know is to regard the wire as demonstrating the boundary location line. Fences of this nature also tend to have widely spaced posts, up to 3 or even 4 metres apart- but there is no rule.

Normal practice from my 30 year knowledge of construction is for the wire to be passed through centrally drilled holes in the post so that the post is deemed to straddle the boundary. The contrary practice of nailing to a face of a post also exists but as far as I know the convention of the wire being the boundary is not normally varied. The statement of responsibility for a boundary does not generally hold true for such developer installed fences. The developer is effectively concerned about areas of land rather than maintainable boundaries.

Yes of course you can have the good side towards you
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Re: Fence on my land - must "good" side face neighbour?

Postby arborlad » Sun Jun 21, 2015 4:47 pm

Roblewis wrote: Place a gate at the far end of your fence to access the 4 inch strip then there can be no claim for AP.



I think the amount of land is too small to be considered for AP, all the neighbour has to do is allow the post and wire fence to disintegrate, or help it on its way and he has possession.

The law presumes you will fence to the fullest extent of your land, if that Planning Officer had all the facts
I don't think the OP was well served by that Planning Officer.
arborlad

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Re: Fence on my land - must "good" side face neighbour?

Postby jonahinoz » Sat Aug 29, 2015 2:36 pm

Hi,

Perhaps it could be argued that you should have been able to look at the good side of your neighbours fence .... the posts should have been his side of the wire.

If your neighbours removes his fence, tell him you are going to move your fence up to the boundary ... just to wind him up.

John W
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Re: Fence on my land - must "good" side face neighbour?

Postby arborlad » Fri Sep 11, 2015 3:25 pm

despair wrote:"he who pays the piper calls the tune "

If the neighbour would also like a "good side "

They need to pay for the additional featherboard and work to make the fence double sided

needs strong Oak or concrete posts though



Have a read of this thread: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=13985

The best fence is one that is wholly owned by one person.

It should be self evident who owns it, having it 'double sided' could mislead someone into thinking it is shared or owned by the neighbour - you don't want any false impressions when it come to boundary features.
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