/ Hedge dispute

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fast eddie - on 20 Apr 2013
Anyone here had a hedge dispute?

Usual story- neighbour with fondness for leylandii. The hedge has hit a good three metres now and ticks the other criteria. I haven't got round to speaking to them yet- just wanting to get my facts straight before I do. I have had a look at the local council guidance stuff- I was just wondering if anyone else has had experience of a dispute so I know what happens if the worst comes to the worst.

I don't imagine that there's going to be an issue- but better to be prepared I'm thinking
Jim C - on 20 Apr 2013
In reply to fast eddie: I have just spent the weekend removing mine because I felt they were getting too big and stealing light from my neighbour. I had found it difficult to keep hem trimmed, and my neighbour need up having to trim his side, and I would have had to go into his garden.I did offer, but he politely declined. I noticed that he too was finding it difficult o keep them at bay, so time for the trees to go.

However, this takes a bit of planning, as I found that you can' t easily hire a chainsaw, so they may have to pay someone to cut them and remove them, and thatbwill be expensive .

I also have to replace the gap with a fence, and that too is expensive.
Think hard before anyone plants these types of trees., you can lose friends, and I can cost a lot to remove them.
Neil Williams - on 21 Apr 2013
In reply to fast eddie:

My neighbour has some, I quite like them as they provide good privacy, but to be fair they are good at trimming them regularly.

Neil
birdie num num - on 21 Apr 2013
In reply to fast eddie:
Advice. Say nothing. Ever. Middle of the night, chainsaw, whack! In and out. Gone. Relax.
Who? Me?
yeti on 21 Apr 2013
In reply to fast eddie:

when we moved in 20 years ago we had a line of leylandi about 4 feet apart infront of a privet hedge, they were only about 3 feet high at the time, we took out a couple then a couple more....we have one left now it's higher than the roof and oooh 18" at the base and stops the rain from landing for half the width of the garden. the birds love it though
bluebealach - on 21 Apr 2013
In reply to fast eddie: I'm a Planning Enforcement Officer for my local council and at 3 mtrs, it sounds like it does qualify as a high hedge.

"A high hedge is defined in the Act7 as so much of a barrier to light or access as is formed
wholly or predominantly by a line of two or more evergreen or semi-evergreen trees or shrubs
and rises to a height of more than 2 metres above ground level. But, for these purposes, a line
of evergreens or semi-evergreens is not to be regarded as forming a barrier to light or access if
gaps significantly affect its overall effect as such a barrier at heights of more than 2 metres
above ground level."

However at the 3 mtrs that you describe, I would not find any expediency in enforcing the reduction in height of such as hedge and it would have to be considerably higher than that.

Having said that, all councils, and situations are different, and it may well qualify - but a word of caution, if you do complain which results in a visit from the council to your neighbour, then tensions will inevitably be heightened.

Good luck mate.
Trangia - on 21 Apr 2013
In reply to bluebealach:

The best way forward is a friendly initial approach. Maybe invite neighbours round for dinner and gently discuss the problem over a glass or two of wine with no threats, just exploring reason?

Certainly worth a try.

bluebealach - on 21 Apr 2013
In reply to Trangia:
> (In reply to bluebealach)
>
> The best way forward is a friendly initial approach.

If this worked. I'd be out of a job!!!!
Rock Badger on 21 Apr 2013
In reply to fast eddie:

Middle of night drill them and fill with some nasty stuff like roundup.
Once cut they will grow even faster and denser, horrible horrible things.
Just kill them,,,, sneakily
Neighbours might agree to topping them maybe ask you to contribute since its you that wants it done, itll need to be re-done every 3 years, and that will cost unless your keen
fast eddie - on 21 Apr 2013
In reply to fast eddie: Thanks all- hopefully cordiality will be the order of the day. After all it's just shubbery...
cuppatea on 21 Apr 2013
In reply to fast eddie:


A Shrubbery? NIH! NIH!
Dax H - on 21 Apr 2013
In reply to fast eddie: Just go round and ask. Years ago I decided I had had enough of the neighbours hedge, he cut both sides but due to carefull cutting it ended up cut to within 6 inch of the border on their side but it took up 3 foot of my garden. I went round and said I needed a word and my neighbour also said he needed a word.
I told him to go first and his word was how do I feel about loosing the hedge and putting a fence up.
A week later we had a fence.
Jim C - on 22 Apr 2013
In reply to birdie num num:
> (In reply to fast eddie)
> Advice. Say nothing. Ever. Middle of the night, chainsaw, whack! In and out. Gone. Relax.
> Who? Me?

I see a small flaw in your master plan birdie.

If my neighbour had done that, the noise would have every light on in the houses overlooking from all sides . It would have been like being caught in a searchlight in a prison camp.

To say nothing of our and other dogs going berserk.
. ( unless they sell silencers for chainsaws?)

I came to the conclusion this weekend that my own trees had to go, before my neighbour mentioned it. But I am pondering the scenario if he had perhaps invited me into his place for a drink and a chat, and he was the one that brought it up. Would I have been happy to cut them down because it was causing him upset/ loss of light or whatever, I guess I would.

I would have been even happier if he had suggested removing the trees together and sharing the cost of a fence to replace them.
I get on reasonably well with my neighbour, so I guess every case is different.

As it is I was well prepared, I cut down 4 trees, erected 5 metres of fence within a few hours and removed all the debris from the shared service lane also within a day at my own cost, but then again , I was the one who planted the trees , so clearly my responsibility,
andy - on 22 Apr 2013
In reply to Jim C: we have a neighbouring house that's across the road, but they have a leylandi(us?) that's been allowed to grow out of control by the old lady who lived there until recently. It must be 8-10m high and throws a shadow right across our patio for the exact hour you really want to sit there on a nice evening. By the time the sun's past it it's cooled down.

We did open negotiations with the old lady via a tree surgeon chap that does work for both of us, and she was showing signs of consenting to taking the top 10' or so off - and then she went and died.

So now we have new owners who've taken tons of branches off the bottom but no sign of them taking the things down! We're now pondering the best way of approaching the issue with them...
woolsack - on 22 Apr 2013
In reply to andy:
> We're now pondering the best way of approaching the issue with them...

leylandii love diesel ;)
EeeByGum - on 22 Apr 2013
In reply to Jim C:

> However, this takes a bit of planning, as I found that you can' t easily hire a chainsaw, so they may have to pay someone to cut them and remove them, and thatbwill be expensive .

Nah - you need to do it the hard way. Learn from my mistake and if you do cut them down, cut them off at 6 foot with a hand held band saw and then trim the lower branches. You then need to dig out the roots which is an almighty faff before using the 6ft trunk to leaver the roots out. Obviously I cut them down at soil level so had no leverage. It took me a whole weekend to rid us of 10 trees!
stubbed on 22 Apr 2013
In reply to EeeByGum:

or you can leave the roots in the ground, the trees die if you cut them down to soil level anyway. They won't grow back. This is what happened with the hedge (2m thick, 6m long and 2m high) that I removed from the front of my house. For a couple of years the roots were in the way whenever I planted anything new, but 5 years on I never find any. Cost me 300 for a tree surgeon to do, took about a day for 2 men. It was probably too expensive but everyone in the village commented on how it improved the front of my house.
Irk the Purist - on 22 Apr 2013
In reply to andy:
>
> So now we have new owners who've taken tons of branches off the bottom but no sign of them taking the things down! We're now pondering the best way of approaching the issue with them...

I recently looked at buying a house with a massive tree in the garden. I wanted it down but after we'd moved in the order of things would have had to have been:
1) Drastically thin the bottom (lifting the skirt apparently, snigger) to give us as much light as possible without removing the tree because
2) Topping it would have given all our neighbours light but not helped us at all and...
3) It had a tree preservation order so we couldn't take it down without getting planning and...
4) Taking large trees down costs a LOT of money and we couldn't afford it straight away.

We backed away from the house in the end because there would be no guarantee we'd get it down but I'd just go and talk to them! Maybe even offer to share the cost?

jkarran - on 22 Apr 2013
In reply to fast eddie:

Just go speak to them first, they may be perfectly reasonable, they may indeed already have similar thoughts about the hedge. You can always offer to help if you think it'll sweeten the deal.

jk
andy - on 22 Apr 2013
In reply to Eric the Red: I'm sure when they move in or when the opportunity comes we'll have a chat. I'm happy to pay for it, actually - I've got a mate who's a tree surgeon so I'll get it as cheap as it can be done, and it'll be worth a few hundred quid not to have the sun disappear after that crucial first cold one after work...
ads.ukclimbing.com
Alex Slipchuk on 22 Apr 2013
In reply to birdie num num:
> (In reply to fast eddie)
> Advice. Say nothing. Ever. Middle of the night, chainsaw, whack! In and out. Gone. Relax.
> Who? Me?

Ok, so that's the neighbours sorted, but what about the hedge?

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