Side garden hedge - help please!

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Side garden hedge - help please!

Post by Woochan » Mon Apr 04, 2011 9:09 pm


My husband and I have just bought a house that has a small back garden, but large gardens at the front and side. At present there is a wall running from the garage at the end of the back garden to the side of the house enclosing the back garden. On the other side of this wall is a large area of garden that we would like to enclose and then take down the wall so that we can create a larger L shaped garden. Alongside the area of garden at the side is a footpath that runs along the front gardens of a row of houses.

The previous owners told us the owner before them applied for planning permission to put up a fence which was refused, but a hedge could be put up instead. We have now seen the original planning documents that say in the reasons for refusing that:

"The introduction of fences, walls or other means of enclosure forward of the buildings on this estate, which has been developed on the principle of 'open forecourts', would be contrary to the original conception of the layout and would detract from the pleasant open character and appearance of the estate."

Would a hedge count as a 'means of enclosure''? From the research I have done I have worked out that planning permission is not normally needed for hedges, so would that be the case here, or could this be an exception? There are no restrictive covenants relating to hedges or fences in the deeds and on the plans there is no differentiation between the part of the garden that is enclosed by the wall and the side area of garden.

Is there any way to find out what is and isn't allowed according to the 'open forecourts' principle that the estate was built on? Can the council interpret this as it wishes or should there be something in writing that outlines what can and can't be done?

Any help would be very much appreciated - I am getting quite confused by it all!

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Re: Side garden hedge - help please!

Post by Mattylad » Tue Apr 05, 2011 8:12 am

IS this extra land yours?

If so I would fence it, AFAIK the law expects you to fence your property and you do not need planing permission to fence your property as long as the fence is below 2m.

A cheap post and wire fence will be adequate to identify it as fenced and yours.
Any comments I give here are my own opinions, for legal advise check with a qualified solicitor.

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Re: Side garden hedge - help please!

Post by Treeman » Tue Apr 05, 2011 8:24 am

Is this part of a planning condition? Planning conditions expire so if it is a condition it may well be “moot”

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Re: Side garden hedge - help please!

Post by FrTed » Tue Apr 05, 2011 12:08 pm

You could just go for it and keep your fingers crossed no - one raises any objections.

My estate was built in the 70's as "open plan" - every one of us now has fenced in front gardens. IMHO it looks neater. Every one of us has stipulations on the deeds stating we should not build fences or walls forward of the front building line. Hasnt stopped anyone :twisted:
"No Dougal, these cows are SMALL, those cows are FAR AWAY"

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