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F E Smith
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 8443
Experience:  I have been practising for 30 years.
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There is a one vehicle lane at the back of our terraced

Resolved Question:

There is a one vehicle lane at the back of our terraced property, allowing all of us access to park privately. The top end of the lane is a dead end. Most neighbours are corteous and allow everyone else freedom of access. One neighbour that lives 2 door down from us, where we have to pass to get to our property is always parking his vehicle overhanging the lane. He has a garage but does not park in it, he chooses to park alongside it which makes it very awkward for us to get past safely.
The lane has a dry stone wall running on the far side of it, and we have burst tyres more than once in trying to squeeze back out of our property to get past him without damaging his vehicle. Now, after 25 + years of struggling past, my partner has bumped the side of the neighbours van in trying to avoid another burst tyre and the neighbour has presented him with a bill for a brand new rear wing ( plus labour costs etc)
Can anyone tell me where we stand legally? The deeds do not mention anything along these lines as the houses were built in 1885 before this kind of problem existed.
Thank you for your time,
Submitted: 3 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  F E Smith replied 3 months ago.

Do you want an answer with regard to the parking with regard to the damage or both?

Why have you been under sufferance regarding this for 25 years? How many people are affected by the selfish actions?

Every time he parks there and you can’t get past, have you ALL ever thought of knocking on the door and asking him to move?

How many burst tyres have there been within the last 6 years and do you have receipts for those and have you ever put him on notice of that damage?

If this were to become litigious, how many people would contribute towards any legal costs?

Do you have any legal expenses insurance attached to your house insurance that could pay for the cost of any litigation?


Customer: replied 3 months ago.
The reason no one has ever made a claim against him and his family is they are very aggressive. You have to drive up but reverse down the lane...When we knock the door to ask him to move no-one answers...if we park behind him when he blocks the lane and leave our vehicles there in order to get to our property ,with shopping etc, he will come & knock and expect us to move asap. No one has ever made a claim against him for the two burst tyres in the last year as he and his family are quite aggressive. Two people would contribute towards litigious costs, I'm not sure about the house insurance expense issue - I will contact my insurers tomorrow to clarify.
Expert:  F E Smith replied 3 months ago.

They become aggressive, call the police.

This is common law nuisance and obstruction. It’s a private lane so the police will not be interested.

It is a nuisance if it is literally, in the normal English dictionary sense of the word a nuisance. It is.

It is obstruction of your right-of-way is the obstruction is substantial and I think that in view of the burst tyres, he would struggle to prove that this parking was not obstruction.

You can apply to court for an injunction (having first threatened him of the pending application) to prevent him parking there and to us the court to award costs against him in respect of the application. To support the application you are going to need photographs and measurements of the width of the lane and how much is being taken up and how much is left and the width of cars and how the damage is caused on the stones. If you have photographs of the damage, so much the better.

The solicitors letter would hopefully avoid the risk of going to court but sometimes, people like this think they are above the law. If he simply ignores it, you are faced with taking him to court to get that injunction. If you get the injunction and he continues to park, then it does become a police matter because he is in breach of the injunction and hence, contempt of court which is a criminal offence for which he is liable to be arrested.

If several of you fund any litigation, it will divide the cost although anyone who doesn’t contribute will still get the benefit of your litigation.

Your partner needs to report this accident to the police and must do so within 24 hours because to fail to do that is a criminal offence. It carries an endorsement points. If that time is running, call the police now. It’s important to get it on the record. The police will not be involved unless the neighbour reports it but he may just be a smarty-pants and do it. If he does it, irrespective the incident, the police will expect your partner to do it.

If he claims for the cost of the damage from you, counterclaim for the cost of the two tyres.

F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 8443
Experience: I have been practising for 30 years.
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