Gate through to private road

Gate through to private road

Postby heegeebeegee » Fri Jul 28, 2017 11:22 pm

Hi All,
New here and tentative about this post so if any more info is required please let me know! I have attached a plan of the area in question.
My wife and I are in the process of buying a house (labelled 1 and coloured a horrible green on the attached image) - so far so stressful. My wife is disabled and walks with a guide dog with a limited range (wife, not dog).
The prospective house is on a close and has a boundary with an unregistered and unadopted dead end lane (marked with blue line) that runs roughly from north west to south east on which there are several properties and a gated field at the northern western end. We would like to put a gate (marked in yellow)in the hedge boundary so that my wife can use the lane as this would reduce her walk up town by 400 metres or so and thus make the whole proposition practical.

There is another bungalow (labelled 2) to south east next to the one we want to buy that is on a different close but has put a gate (marked in orange )in their hedge and uses the lane to make walking up town easier. They have had grumbles about their access but no legal action taken.

Running from the gated northern end of the lane three is a block of 3 terraced houses that have access by a covenant with a previous and now dead owner of all three terraced houses. Then there is a detached house (labelled 3) that has access to the lane by a covenant with other previous owners of his property, then a bungalow (labelled 4) that also has the covenant for access, an obligation to keep their bit of the lane in good order but no mention of a fence on my side of the lane.
I have spoken to a couple of the residents on the lane, one of whom is an ex partner of mine living in one of the terrace of three houses and she mentioned the grumbles but seemed quite non-committal, she wants to put her house on the market shortly and presumably doesn't want any disputes while she is selling.

I spoke to the resident of 3 who stated "of course, there is no access through from there to here" so I left it at that and didn't pursue the matter with him any further. His online register deeds say that he has a covenant to keep the fence west of his property on my side of the lane in good order. The fence to the west of his property forms part but not all of the boundary of the property I want to buy. So I wouldn't put the gate there.

As the lane is unregistered, not linked to the deeds of any of the properties on the lane and I can't find the owner and there is a precedent with the existing gate through do you all think I have a good chance of using the lane for my proposed ease of access for my wife?

many thanks,

Heegeebeegee
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Re: Gate through to private road

Postby ukmicky » Sat Jul 29, 2017 12:58 am

Only the owner of the lane can legally stop you.

However do not be surprised if those who have an actual legal right to use it , mistakenly think their easement also allows them to prevent you from using it and perform actions to prevent your use .


Only consider purchasing it if you are prepared to go the other way should you lose the battle of wills
Advice given is not legally qualified and you are advised to gain a professional opinion
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Re: Gate through to private road

Postby mugwump » Sat Jul 29, 2017 7:05 am

Does no.4 has the same entry as 3 about maintaining the fence to the west of them?
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Re: Gate through to private road

Postby Collaborate » Sat Jul 29, 2017 7:44 am

Your talk of access by covenant is confusing. You have access by right of way, and obligations by covenant.

As no 3 you say owns the fence on your side of the road it is possible that they own the lane in front of their property and have a ROA over the rest of the road. If that is the case each property on the opposite side of the lane might own the whole of the lane in front of their property.

For such an expensive purchase you really need to be addressing this question to your conveyancing solicitor, who will be able to examine the deeds for you. It's what they are there for, after all.
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Re: Gate through to private road

Postby Eliza » Sat Jul 29, 2017 8:43 am

I would have thought only the owner of the lane could actually do anything concrete to stop you using the lane. If there is indeed no known owner - then all these other people could do is conduct a "battle of wills" with you and try and tell you you aren't allowed to use it. But it would just be "sour grapes" - as they have it down in writing they must pay towards maintaining the lane and your property doesnt.

You need to check with your solicitor. I'd be willing to bet they would tell you only the owner could stop you and if the owner can't be found = no problem (other than developing a bit of a thick skin to ignore grumbles from the others). It's no skin off their nose after all. There won't be any extra "wear and tear" on the lane from two people and a dog just walking on it.

The one point I would make though is that - at a practical level - there mustnt be any detriment to the lane at all from the dog using it for walkies. You need to reassure the others that no dog mess will be left in the lane (either sitting there on the ground or a bag of it hung from a hedge for those mythical "p*o fairies" to remove). Also - there may be some useful plants on the verges of that lane that are being picked by foragers (eating them) or people making their own herbal medicines. As a forager myself - it's upsetting when I see that dogs are being allowed to "go to the loo" on plants I wish to forage (nettles is the first thing that comes to mind there - as I often find them ruined by the knowledge it's dog-walking territory and it doesnt feel safe to take them).
Apologies for not giving exact personal details in my posts - you never know who is reading....
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Re: Gate through to private road

Postby mugwump » Sat Jul 29, 2017 9:00 am

As this will be an assistance dog they are well trained in where they do their business so no danger of fouling the verge/road
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Re: Gate through to private road

Postby heegeebeegee » Sat Jul 29, 2017 9:22 am

Mugwump - No, 3 does not have the same covenant to maintain the fence opposite.

Collaborate - Apologies for confusing the terms... None of the deeds for any of the properties have any of the lane marked up as belonging to them, the outlines only go around their respective house, garden and border with the lane marked with the blue line.

For 3 it states -
"TOGETHER also with the rights for the purchaser his heirs and assigns
the owners and occupiers of the messuage intended to be erected on the
premises hereby assured at all times hereafter by day and by night and
for all purposes with or without horses or other animals carts
carriages or waggons laden or unladen to go and return along and over
the private road or way on the west side of the hereditaments hereby
assured leading from the said messuage so intended to be erected as
aforesaid and from the said hereditaments to the public highway called
Beach Road or Lower High Street"

AND
the Purchaser shall also maintain in proper order and repair the
private road in front of his premises and also the fence on the west
side of such private road.


For 4 it states -
And Together with full right and liberty for the Purchasers and their
successors in title the owners and occupiers of the said messuage and
hereditaments hereby conveyed at all times hereafter and for all
purposes with or without horses carts and carriages to go pass and
repass along over and upon the road marked "Private Road" and coloured
yellow on the said plan leading from the main road to the said
hereditaments hereby conveyed the Purchasers and their successors in
title from time to time paying their due proportion according to the
extent of the frontage of the said hereditaments on the said private
road of the expense of maintaining the said road until the same shall
be adopted or taken over by the District Council or other Local
Authority


Eliza - The dog is indeed well trained and only goes in our garden where it is picked up immediately or on the beach in the permitted dog walking area (unlike the holiday makers) where the same happens.We like to be ambassadors for dogs.
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Re: Gate through to private road

Postby arborlad » Sat Jul 29, 2017 9:47 am

Eliza wrote:The one point I would make though is that - at a practical level - there mustnt be any detriment to the lane at all from the dog using it for walkies. You need to reassure the others that no dog mess will be left in the lane (either sitting there on the ground or a bag of it hung from a hedge for those mythical "p*o fairies" to remove). Also - there may be some useful plants on the verges of that lane that are being picked by foragers (eating them) or people making their own herbal medicines. As a forager myself - it's upsetting when I see that dogs are being allowed to "go to the loo" on plants I wish to forage (nettles is the first thing that comes to mind there - as I often find them ruined by the knowledge it's dog-walking territory and it doesnt feel safe to take them).




Before casting aspersions on the actions of others, you need to know that your own are beyond reproach - they're not!
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Re: Gate through to private road

Postby Eliza » Sat Jul 29, 2017 12:13 pm

Sighs...in your personal opinion.
Apologies for not giving exact personal details in my posts - you never know who is reading....
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Re: Gate through to private road

Postby arborlad » Sat Jul 29, 2017 12:17 pm

heegeebeegee wrote: We would like to put a gate (marked in yellow)in the hedge boundary so that my wife can use the lane as this would reduce her walk up town by 400 metres or so and thus make the whole proposition practical.




Are you certain that the hedge will be in your ownership?
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Re: Gate through to private road

Postby heegeebeegee » Sat Jul 29, 2017 3:52 pm

arborlad wrote:
heegeebeegee wrote: We would like to put a gate (marked in yellow)in the hedge boundary so that my wife can use the lane as this would reduce her walk up town by 400 metres or so and thus make the whole proposition practical.


Are you certain that the hedge will be in your ownership?


Yes I'm certain that the hedge is within what will be my property. There is a wall that is built to the edge of the road and that wall is mine. The hedge grows out of the top of the wall. But I will dounle check with the conveyancer now you've mentioned it. Thanks arborlad!
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Re: Gate through to private road

Postby Collaborate » Sat Jul 29, 2017 4:35 pm

arborlad wrote:

Before casting aspersions on the actions of others, you need to know that your own are beyond reproach - they're not!


I do wish you would drop this tiresome vendetta against certain posters.
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Re: Gate through to private road

Postby Collaborate » Sat Jul 29, 2017 4:39 pm

OP - if the owner of no 3 is obliged to maintain the fence on your side of the road they will also have the right to prevent you from removing it to insert a gate.

If the others on that lane only have a ROW and the owner either cannot be found or isn't interested you might get away with it then you might get away with it, but there is always a risk. If access to the lane is crucial to your purchase, walk away.
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Re: Gate through to private road

Postby heegeebeegee » Sat Jul 29, 2017 5:18 pm

Collaborate wrote:OP - if the owner of no 3 is obliged to maintain the fence on your side of the road they will also have the right to prevent you from removing it to insert a gate.

If the others on that lane only have a ROW and the owner either cannot be found or isn't interested you might get away with it then you might get away with it, but there is always a risk. If access to the lane is crucial to your purchase, walk away.


No 3 only has responsibility for the fence opposite his property, not for all of it so there is a stretch of hedge opposite no 4 that has no fence in front of it. I'm off to see the owner of one of the terrace at the north end who I know to see if she knows who the owner of the lane is. She has been there longer than anyone else as far as I know.
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Re: Gate through to private road

Postby arborlad » Sat Jul 29, 2017 5:37 pm

heegeebeegee wrote:
Collaborate wrote:OP - if the owner of no 3 is obliged to maintain the fence on your side of the road they will also have the right to prevent you from removing it to insert a gate.

If the others on that lane only have a ROW and the owner either cannot be found or isn't interested you might get away with it then you might get away with it, but there is always a risk. If access to the lane is crucial to your purchase, walk away.


No 3 only has responsibility for the fence opposite his property, not for all of it so there is a stretch of hedge opposite no 4 that has no fence in front of it. I'm off to see the owner of one of the terrace at the north end who I know to see if she knows who the owner of the lane is. She has been there longer than anyone else as far as I know.




Can you amend your drawing to show where #3 fence is please.
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