Branches and Hedges overlapping boundary Scotland

Branches and Hedges overlapping boundary Scotland

Postby BaronMuttley » Sat Aug 11, 2012 11:26 am

HI people, Just joined. Ive tried to browse a number of posts here for information but apart from some general stuff I can't quite get an answer to my particular problem so I'd like to ask in this posting.

I Live in Scotland (different rules at times). I am a property owner, and my southern neighbour is a Council Tenant. My house is situated at the top of a slope, and is roughly 2-3ft higher elevated than my neighbour. When I bought the house, I inherited what I assumed was a boundary feature (a 2m high brick wall). This ran from my western boundary to the eastern and I assumed it was along the boundary line. Because of the higher elevation, 6inch block supporting piers have been placed on the neighbour's side, as opposed to the conventional owners side. No Problem with this so far.

I recently had a dispute with my neighbour / council about some repairs needed to a section of said wall. My neighbour, while denying any responsibility for PAYING for the repairs, or contributing to the damage, was under the impression that as one face was on his side he could do with it whatever he liked to it. We argued about that, (me being accused of being petty when I said I didnt want him painting or drilling into it etc). I enlisted a surveyor to determine the exact extent of my property boundaries. And the Council told him directly he had nothing to do with it. The wall itself is built WHOLLY within my property boundaries. It turns out that my boundary line is exactly inline with the outer face of the 6 inch block supporting piers. This, in effect means that a 6 inch strip of land / dirt between the piers is actually MY Land even though technically it is in HIS garden.

My neighbour, over the years, has done an amount of landscaping / remodelling and has transplanted a Silver Birch tree (about 5m in height now) to within 6 inches of my property line / wall foundation, (and less than 4 meters from my house wall foundation) AND has more recently planted about a dozen leylandii conifers along his fence line (existing wooden fence) with 3 of the plants planted within 12 inches or less of my wall.

Here is my question: I know that if branches of trees / hedges cross over a traditional wall / fence I am entitled to cut them back to the boundary. (following the "rules" of informing the owner and offering back the cuttings etc)

Am I ENTITLED to cut back growth from a tree or conifer or other bushy plant if it crosses my ACTUAL boundary Line, (ie in the "dead space" on the other side of the wall which is my land) even if it does NOT (yet) cross the physical boundary feature of the wall? Or am I limited legally by what comes over the actual Wall itself?

Already the birch is encroaching over the top of my wall, and I know leylandii tend to spread out wide as well as growing tall.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks
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Re: Branches and Hedges overlapping boundary Scotland

Postby despair » Sat Aug 11, 2012 11:48 am

I doubt scottish law is different on this

you can cut back all vegetation that crosses the actual boundary line ..............you have proof of where your actual boundary is so there should be no dispute

you cannot cut beyond the boundary and you sahould OFFER back all arisings to the neighbour

i trust you will also ensure in writing and keep a copy the neighbour realises he will be responsible for all and any damage the roots of his trees do to your wall
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Re: Branches and Hedges overlapping boundary Scotland

Postby BaronMuttley » Sat Aug 11, 2012 4:36 pm

HI Despair.

Thank you. your reply is along the lines of what I thought in the first place. ie JUST because the wall is there doesn't mean all of "his" garden is actually his. as such. However the man is such an obnoxiously arrogant and aggressive person he is very difficult to deal with. I'm sorely tempted to actually "close the gap" by installing some kind of barrier on what is mine on his side. Failing that, a thick dayglo paint line on the boundary... ( I jest, THAT would indeed be Petty). At the end of the day, he is the son of the council tenant, and any disputes from now on will be directed straight at the local Council, thus avoiding the need for discussion with him personally. The only difficulty I may have is I would probably have to access his garden to actually do the trimming. lol

I intend to write to him about his (future) responsibilities with regards to his Tree / conifers.

Thanks for your reply.
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Re: Branches and Hedges overlapping boundary Scotland

Postby hzatph » Sat Aug 11, 2012 8:42 pm

How are you going to do that without trespassing on your neighbour's land.

The knowledge on this forum concerns law in England and Wales so unless anyone claims to have knowledge of Scottish law take any advice given here with a healthy dose of salt.
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Re: Branches and Hedges overlapping boundary Scotland

Postby arborlad » Sat Aug 11, 2012 8:45 pm

BaronMuttley wrote: I enlisted a surveyor to determine the exact extent of my property boundaries. And the Council told him directly he had nothing to do with it.



I'm unclear on this bit, did they not recognise his authority or deny access, did they accept his findings?

Apart from the materials and dimensions, this situation is very similar to erecting a featheredge fence the wrong way round, with the fair face facing the owner and the posts and rails facing the neighbour.

See this thread: viewtopic.php?f=4&t=18007
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Re: Branches and Hedges overlapping boundary Scotland

Postby BaronMuttley » Sun Aug 12, 2012 1:50 pm

arborlad wrote:
BaronMuttley wrote: I enlisted a surveyor to determine the exact extent of my property boundaries. And the Council told him directly he had nothing to do with it.



I'm unclear on this bit, did they not recognise his authority or deny access, did they accept his findings?

Apart from the materials and dimensions, this situation is very similar to erecting a featheredge fence the wrong way round, with the fair face facing the owner and the posts and rails facing the neighbour.

See this thread: Im not authorised to post URLs apparently so I had to delete this link,,,,,



Sorry, I worded this badly. The Council told my Neighbour, not the surveryor, that he had no rights whatsover to "his" face of the wall or indeed anything past the boundary line. He's been noticeably silent since then.
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Re: Branches and Hedges overlapping boundary Scotland

Postby BaronMuttley » Sun Aug 12, 2012 3:42 pm

hzatph wrote:How are you going to do that without trespassing on your neighbour's land.

The knowledge on this forum concerns law in England and Wales so unless anyone claims to have knowledge of Scottish law take any advice given here with a healthy dose of salt.


I hear what you are saying about Scottish law. Apart from Military, Government and some other sites, there is no "law" of Trespass in Scotland. Law of common nuisance apparently.

I can lean over my wall and get to the actual boundary line, up to a certain height anyways. Furthermore, the access to neighbouring lands act of 1992 can force them to allow me in, if I have understood it correctly, albeit with a Court Order., besides which, his landlord is the local council; I will just put my request for access to them, and let them arrange a mutually agreeable time with their tenant.
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Re: Branches and Hedges overlapping boundary Scotland

Postby arborlad » Wed Aug 15, 2012 7:56 pm

BaronMuttley wrote:
arborlad wrote:
BaronMuttley wrote: I enlisted a surveyor to determine the exact extent of my property boundaries. And the Council told him directly he had nothing to do with it.



I'm unclear on this bit, did they not recognise his authority or deny access, did they accept his findings?

Apart from the materials and dimensions, this situation is very similar to erecting a featheredge fence the wrong way round, with the fair face facing the owner and the posts and rails facing the neighbour.

See this thread: Im not authorised to post URLs apparently so I had to delete this link,,,,,



Sorry, I worded this badly. The Council told my Neighbour, not the surveryor, that he had no rights whatsover to "his" face of the wall or indeed anything past the boundary line. He's been noticeably silent since then.


It's not clear how your wall came to be built the way it was, I'm assuming because of the height difference it is also doing some retaining.

Any boundary feature, whether wall or fence, should be built so that it presents a continuous, unbroken line abutting the boundary. When not constructed like that you get contention, either that the piers/posts are encroaching on the adjoining land or that the piers/posts are correct and the gaps between are unsecured.

Did your council accept the surveyors assertion as to the boundary following the piers?
arborlad

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Re: Branches and Hedges overlapping boundary Scotland

Postby BaronMuttley » Fri Aug 17, 2012 11:27 am

arborlad wrote:
It's not clear how your wall came to be built the way it was, I'm assuming because of the height difference it is also doing some retaining.

Any boundary feature, whether wall or fence, should be built so that it presents a continuous, unbroken line abutting the boundary. When not constructed like that you get contention, either that the piers/posts are encroaching on the adjoining land or that the piers/posts are correct and the gaps between are unsecured.

Did your council accept the surveyors assertion as to the boundary following the piers?
[/quote]

The wall had originally been put up this way, by a previous owner, due to the difference in height of the two plots. My house stands between 5 and 10 feet or more higher than the neighbour, so yes the piers on the opposite side have a supporting / retaining function. the OUTER face of the original (6 inch) piers were built up to the actual boundary line (previously back in the 80s there had been a fence) leaving effectively a 6 inch strip of my official land, behind an invisible line, not "bounded"....

something like this if I can draw it...

..................................................... Boundary line as measured
______[pier]___________________[pier]__________ use your imagination to put the dotted line on the upper part of the square brackets [ ]...
WALL WALL WALL WALL WALL WALL WALL WALL |

and that should represent roughly what it looks like with the "dead space" between piers.

Council has not disputed the surveryors measurements and as stated previously, informed their tenant that he is not to cross the line, nor use for his own purposes the surface of the wall in anyway, as it is well inside my own (private) property. In fact since the being told that officially, he has started piling junk wooden planks and pallets against it,( I feel in a deliberate attempt to goad me into a reaction) and placed potted conifers inside / overlapping the dead space, directly butting against the wall's surface. I'm in communication with the Council about this, but as usual they drag their heels. I feel a citizens advice / anti-social behaviour thing coming on. The guy is so aggressive, and unapproachable that my elderly mother who also lives here is scared and intimidated by him, for fear of what he MIGHT do next....
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