Screening for privacy

Screening for privacy

Postby skippy1981 » Tue Jan 24, 2017 5:30 pm

Hi All,

My neighbors have recently built a loft conversion with a big balcony window which overlooks my garden. I don't object to it, but I would like to establish a private area of the garden.

I'd like to put up a structure of 2.5 meter height parallel to the boundary fence and grow climbing plants on it, wisteria and clematis etc. A pergola would work, especially if i added some wires to the side to increase the plant coverage. But I'm not so keen that the pergola will create shade in the only sunny part of my garden. Really I don't want a shade area, I just want to screen.

Ideally I'd like to have either a tall set of trellis, or a 'single pergola' which is three posts in a row with a beam at the top. But from my research it looks like either of these could be considered a fence! Unfortunately my local council refuse to give any guidance.

Does anyone know exactly what constitutes a fence for permitted development purposes? And if I can't use a trellis or a single pergola to reach this height are there any other ideas? I considered bamboo but I think it needs quite a deep bed to grow well, and space is at a premium in my garden.

Thanks :)
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Re: Screening for privacy

Postby COGGY » Tue Jan 24, 2017 6:03 pm

Hi
We have bamboo used for privacy. Bamboo spreads a lot. It is best to research the spread before buying, which we did. We have it planted in a very very large black plastic pot which is on concrete and raised up off the concrete on a slab. This means we can easily see that the roots are not spreading as it is near to a building. It has provided the privacy required. Coggy
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Re: Screening for privacy

Postby despair » Tue Jan 24, 2017 7:40 pm

how on earth did they get PP for a balcony affecting your privacy ?

you can install tall bamboo or steel poles set apart with wire between them and grow all manner of climbers up them and make a living screen
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Re: Screening for privacy

Postby SarahSue » Tue Jan 24, 2017 11:49 pm

One idea for screening is a trellis planter. In other words, trellis attached to a trough. 2.5 metres is fairly high so it may be that you need a deeper trough but if not attached to a wall say and just a free standing structure then it should not flout any planning regs. This can also be a fairly attractive feature especially if climbers are planted.
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Re: Screening for privacy

Postby thin and crispy » Wed Jan 25, 2017 1:41 am

In a similar situation I used a canvas boat sail attached to a couple of poles that were hinged at ground level. Some thin rope and a couple of pulleys and you have a great screen that can be raised and lowered within seconds. It's not a permanent structure i.e. it's not permanently over 2m in height, therefore it's probably not contravening planning regulations. (At least, my argument that it wasn't was enough to convince my neighbours not to complain to the LA.)

Alternatively, could you just explain to your neighbours that their new balcony compromises your privacy, and ask them whether they would object to a pergola etc?
Prejudice, not being founded on reason, cannot be removed by argument. Samuel Johnson.
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Re: Screening for privacy

Postby jonahinoz » Wed Jan 25, 2017 10:20 am

Hi,

A fence 2m high is PD. There is nothing to stop you applying for PP to erect something higher. I'd suggest frosted glass ... but perhaps not.

Can we assume that the loft conversion and balcony window had PP? Maybe your neighbours considered it to be PD ... and perhaps it isn't. There is something about the "plane of the original roof", but I cannot claim to know what that means.

John W
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Re: Screening for privacy

Postby skippy1981 » Fri Jan 27, 2017 7:09 pm

Thanks for the suggestions. They did get PP, and I believe this is because they have a juliet balcony, which my council seems to regards as a big window rather than a full platform. I didn't object because I think in the area we live, with narrow gardens and houses with velux windows its natural to get overlooked to some extent. But it would be nice to have a screen so I the garden 'feels' more enclosed and private.

I do like the bamboo idea, but I have a narrow garden and I couldn't afford to give the bamboo more than .5 meter wide bed or I'd lose the sunny side of the garden. Most of the bamboo I see online seems like it would be happier in a bed of say 1m width.

This week I've been thinking and I've gone off the idea of a full pergola, but still very keen on getting a 'single pagoda' like the one attached so I don't lose sunlight. But I do worry that if I go upto the 2.5 meter height and add wires between the posts, the council could call it a 'fence' rather than a 'structure' Its seems really ambiguous!

I am considering applying for a permitted development certificate to get a call on it before I put the thing up.
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Re: Screening for privacy

Postby despair » Fri Jan 27, 2017 11:12 pm

posts with wires between have never yet been subject to complaints etc under planning
and can be higher than 2.5m
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