Can I attach trellising to a party fence?

Can I attach trellising to a party fence?

Postby Mikeybikey » Fri Aug 11, 2017 4:58 pm

I think this is a simple query but I have not been able to find a direct answer on the site - so far!

We have a party fence with our neighbour which is about 6 foot high. He has now erected a massive deck right across his garden at a height of about 4 feet so that any adult standing on the deck can see right into our previously secluded dining area. He obtained planning permission for this. We were not properly consulted by the Council about this application as they failed to put the revised plans on their website. This is now with the Local Government Ombudsman, but that is mostly another story.

As you can imagine this has not been good for our relationship, particularly as he did not discuss his proposals with us first. Nevertheless, out of courtesy and in an attempt to be a good neighbour, I have now approached him to let him know that I want to erect some trellising on our side of the fence to support our climbing plants, which are starting to provide some privacy. By putting the trellising on our side of the fence, but about 12 to 18 inches above the top of the current fence line, we will improve our privacy and we will stay on or around the 2m height limit (the ground slopes a lot in each direction so actually determining where to measure the 2m is not easy).

I thought he might protest about the height but he is fine with that, instead he has stated that the trellising can't be attached to the fence and must be free standing. My understanding was that we could fix pretty much anything we want to our side of a party fence, being mindful of the standard height restriction. It would be very difficult to fix the trellis in the ground as there is a rockery underneath and concrete foundations under the fence posts themselves. In any case, the visual effect will be no different. I would simply attach batons to the existing concrete posts and attach the trellis to those.

Can anyone confirm that I am within my rights to do this? I don't want to make things between us any worse, but it would help to know that I am at least acting legally.

Thanks for any advice.
Mikeybikey
 
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Re: Can I attach trellising to a party fence?

Postby MacadamB53 » Fri Aug 11, 2017 7:39 pm

Hi Mikeybikey,

My understanding was that we could fix pretty much anything we want to our side of a party fence

only if you can somehow make sure the screws/nails/staples penetrate into the other owner's portion of the fence.

or, put another way, not without the other owner's permission - unless you prefer being uncivil.

Kind regards, Mac
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Re: Can I attach trellising to a party fence?

Postby Collaborate » Sat Aug 12, 2017 6:50 am

We've done that to our jointly owned fence. We paid half, and next door sorted out the fencer who did an awful job and made the fence wonky (also replaced a 4 foot fence with a 2m fence without consulting us). We attached full height panels to the wooden panels (it's one of those where you drop the panels in) and now grow climbing plants up it. It helps that the side of the panel with the batons on is facing us.
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Re: Can I attach trellising to a party fence?

Postby Mikeybikey » Sat Aug 12, 2017 11:16 am

Thanks Mac - I assume that you meant
"only if you can somehow make sure the screws/nails/staples DO NOT penetrate into the other owner's portion of the fence."

Technically this is quite easy to achieve as there are four inch concrete posts into which we can drill 2 inch holes to attach the batons. All the other technical solutions I have looked at are going to be much more difficult to achieve and particularly, if I start drilling into the existing foundations of the fence, I might compromise its integrity, which would not be acceptable.

I don't want to be uncivil but the neighbour has completely failed to consult us on any of his developments and now seems to want to make it difficult for us to make alterations on our side of the fence. Relationships are not easy but I think i will approach him again and ask why this is a problem for him given it will make no difference to how it looks. I want to be civil but also to reclaim a bit of privacy.

Ho hum, first world issues I guess, but it is helpful to get the views of others.
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Re: Can I attach trellising to a party fence?

Postby Mikeybikey » Mon Sep 18, 2017 10:55 am

Just to complete the story.
I consulted our Planning dept who politely told me it was not an issue they would get involved with - no surprise there.
I took some legal advice from my nephew who works in the general area of property law. After a bit of research he advised that there was no legal reason why we could not attach trellising to our side of the fence.
I tried one more text to the neighbour giving more detail about how we would only be attaching the batons to the concrete fence posts. The tone was firm (i.e. this is for information rather than we are seeking your permission) and he eventually responded that he was OK with this.
So, a good outcome and I feel it has been worth going the extra mile in terms of communication rather than just ploughing ahead regardless of the neighbour's view and making a difficult situation worse.
Mikeybikey
 
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