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Hello my name is Alex and I will help you with this. Please note that I am a working Solicitor and may be on and offline as I have to attend Court and meet with clients, even at weekends. As such you may not get an instant response when you reply as this is not an ‘on demand’ live service, but rest assured I will be giving your question my immediate attention upon return.
Have they said why they will not allow access please?
I see you are offline so I will answer the question anyway and assume they have just refused without giving a reason.
Under the Access to Neighbouring Land Act 1992 you have a right to gain access to a neighbours land in order to carry out maintenance work on property. You have already asked and this has been refused. Therefore to make sure that the neighbour understands their actions you should ask again in writing formally for permission and say that if they refuse you will make an application to Court to seek an order giving you permission.
If they still refuse then you can apply to the Court under the above Act
(a)who, for the purpose of carrying out works to any land (the “dominant land”), desires to enter upon any adjoining or adjacent land (the “servient land”), and
(b)who needs, but does not have, the consent of some other person to that entry,
may make an application to the court for an order under this section (“an access order”) against that other person.
(2)On an application under this section, the court shall make an access order if, and only if, it is satisfied—
(a)that the works are reasonably necessary for the preservation of the whole or any part of the dominant land; and
(b)that they cannot be carried out, or would be substantially more difficult to carry out, without entry upon the servient land;
but this subsection is subject to subsection (3) below.
(3)The court shall not make an access order in any case where it is satisfied that, were it to make such an order—
(a)the respondent or any other person would suffer interference with, or disturbance of, his use or enjoyment of the servient land, or
(b)the respondent, or any other person (whether of full age or capacity or not) in occupation of the whole or any part of the servient land, would suffer hardship,
The Court should therefore grant access to allow you or your contractor to do the work. If the neighbour refuses then this could be considered contempt of Court. But I doubt it would get that far. The threat of a Court application may sway your neighbour into giving access and if not when he attends Court and has to explain to a Judge why he refuses to give access I am sure that would change his mind.
Can I clarify anything for you about this?
If this answers your question, please take a moment before you leave and rate my service, it only takes a second and is an important part of the process. Otherwise if you need more information or help then please click reply. Alex
So, to clarify, i have asked him for access, explaining that a 1sq foot hole will need to be made (New Town Conservation area) to reach the blockage in the chimney, i have said that i will reinstate the wall \room to it's previous condition, the chimney specialists have advised that they have done this many times, which will involve rebricking the wall\replastering and I will arrange for a decorator to repaint\paper the wall. I live in a garden flat and want to reinstate the fire\chimney to it's former glory, he lives on the top floor. I know it is a big ask, however I also think that he is not entering the spirit of living in a flat with existing neighbours
Yes. You can still ask the Court for an order as long as you make good any damage.
Am i servient or dominant? I own the chimney, have access to the main stair of the property?
Dont worry about the technicalities. You can have access outside the property.