Neighbours plant breaking fence

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Rufus20
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Aug 15, 2013 4:43 pm

Neighbours plant breaking fence

Post by Rufus20 » Thu Aug 15, 2013 6:29 pm

Hi

I am responsible for the North West fence in my garden. It was installed by the previous owners. We live on a hill so the neighbouring property has a higher landscape then my garden. On my side I have a raised bed of 0.5m then a wooden fence at the boundary, in total equals 2m. The 0.5m bed is level with next door's garden. When I bought the house 4 years ago there was a slight lean in from the fence towards my house, which the previous owners had tried to correct with metal supports. The fence is now collapsing towards my house by 0.5m at the top because of next door's plants pushing it and the only reason it hasn't completely collapsed is a tree on my side is pushing back and holding it up. The bottom of the fence is still in the correct boundary position.

I recently trimmed the offending plant (very large old wisteria) back to the boundary above the fence, as it had invaded 2m into my garden and was trying to latch onto the house. I only cut what was overhanging the fence but unfortunately as it hadn't been controlled, it was most of the plants foliage that was overhanging and just left a few branches and the huge trunk on the neighbours side. My neighbour went nuts with me and said she could now see straight into my conservatory as her ground height is higher. We can't see into her property as the fence is over 2m in total. I politely explained that I was well within my rights to cut the plant and she could have all the cuttings. I also explained that her plant had seriously damaged the fence and it was near collapse. She wants a new higher fence put up, which is fine with me but not until her plant is controlled. I don't mind paying for the replacement fence if I have to but can I make her pay for part of it as her plant damaged it?

If I take down the old fence, am I within my rights to cut her plant completely back to the boundary? I think that part of the trunk of the wisteria is completely on my side of the boundary so to remove that portion would effectively kill it. The trunk is at least 10 inch diameter. She doesn't want her plant cut at all but I can't replace the fence unless it is.

Also as we have different ground heights can I put up higher then 2m? For her it is only 1.5m

Thanks

despair
Posts: 16381
Joined: Mon Mar 14, 2005 7:07 am

Re: Neighbours plant breaking fence

Post by despair » Thu Aug 15, 2013 6:50 pm

Technically since your neighbours is the higher land she should retain it with a proper retaining wall

was your land lowered or hers raised its vital you find out

You are 100% correct that you can cut everything right back to the boundary although you should not kill the tree /wisteria

Its very doubtful she can force you to install a fence at all irrespective of what your deeds might say and given her attitude I would be inclined to tell her to build a retaining wall and install her own fence since her wisteria has damaged your fence that way the responsibility for the wisteria rests with her

hzatph
Posts: 2461
Joined: Tue Apr 12, 2005 9:37 am

Re: Neighbours plant breaking fence

Post by hzatph » Thu Aug 15, 2013 9:50 pm

It is 2m from the original height of the land - it is not clear which side, if either, is the original height.

I would put in a fence strong enough to support the pressure from the wisteria.

despair
Posts: 16381
Joined: Mon Mar 14, 2005 7:07 am

Re: Neighbours plant breaking fence

Post by despair » Thu Aug 15, 2013 10:05 pm

Sorry but given that the neighbours land is 2 ft higher it will be really difficult to install a fence strong enough to retain a wistetia with that diameter of trunk
Normally its the higher lands duty to install a retaining wall

I think this neighbour needs to change their attitude and take some responsibility

The op does not have to re install a fence

despair
Posts: 16381
Joined: Mon Mar 14, 2005 7:07 am

Re: Neighbours plant breaking fence

Post by despair » Fri Aug 16, 2013 12:01 pm

The OP has nothing whatever to apologise for
They were perfectly within their rights cutting back everything which overhung their land and pushing over/breaking their fence

It is the neighbour who is totally unreasonable and failing to grow a wisteria correctly with its trunk well within their land and a proper framework for it to grow on ...........which is.not the OPs fence

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