Right of way disputes

  Admiral Allstar 22:56 12 Nov 2008


If a homeowner has a right of way over a neighbouring property and the neighbour replaces the gate access with a fixed fence panel, does anyone know the law regarding removing the offending blockage, ie if it is removed with minimal damage simply to enable use of the right of way would criminal damages charges be brought?

This would be done in light of the ongoing legal tussle via solicitors to remove the blockage, but as this would take time the homeowner would be greatly put out and unable to enjoy the property and all associated rights.

  lotvic 23:12 12 Nov 2008

You should ask your solicitor about this.

  lotvic 23:16 12 Nov 2008

sorry, posted a bit previous, I meant to say
You should ask your solicitor about this course of action as it may complicate your case if the neighbour then sues claiming you have damaged his/her property - the fence panel (even if no damage is actually done, how will you prove it, etc etc)

  bluto1 23:19 12 Nov 2008

I'm sure that the "offended" party has no right to remove the panel, at least not until the solicitors have given a decision.
Now, knowing that solicitors have many, many problems to deal with, the decision making could take a long time, so I'd be inclined to leave the "offending" party's section of fence where it is and purchase a ladder which can straddle the obstruction, and all should be reasonably happy, unless ,of course you suffered dizzy fits from climbing too high.

  lotvic 23:32 12 Nov 2008

I try to be helpful when I can, here is a link to the forum 'Neighbours from Hell' click here
you have to login, there seems to be several cases like yours.

  spuds 23:45 12 Nov 2008

Rights of Way and Boundary disputes can be very complicated, and only a legal adviser would be able to give the correct information concerning your particular case.

What does your house deeds state. Does it actually state that there is a Right of Way or access provision?.

  Forum Editor 00:51 13 Nov 2008

it's the right of one or more parties to cross what might otherwise be private property. You may remove enough of an obstruction on a public right of way to get past, or you may make a short detour to get around it, but be careful not to trespass on another person's land as you do so.

  Admiral Allstar 07:47 13 Nov 2008

Many thanksfor the posts.

I was not clear in my original post - I am seeing my solicitor next week as this is the earliest opportunity. However, I need to get a wheel barrow through the gate as I am having items delivered for my garden. The right of way across my neighbours back garden has been proven to him and the act of putting the fence panel this week to replace a blown down gate is deliberately provocating aswell as in full knowledge of the facts. My solicitor has confirmed the right of way as he has the deeds (there is a useful diagram attached outlining the right of way).

  carver 09:10 13 Nov 2008

These can prove to be rather expensive fights if it goes to court, maybe your local council has a Rights of way department, it may be a long shot but it's worth a try to get them involved and see if they can do anything for you, after all you do pay council tax.

  Toneman 09:48 13 Nov 2008

Don't think the local council's Rights of Way department would be concerned with what is actually a dispute over a PRIVATE right of way.

  Woolwell 10:23 13 Nov 2008

There is no mention of any conversation between you and your neighbour. I assume that you have spoken to the neighbour about wanting to get a wheelbarrow through to your garden. You will need to make notes of when you spoke, etc. A letter from your solicitor may be needed. Unfortunately any legal time costs money and I would want to know my potential legal costs at the beginning.

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