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F E Smith
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
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Experience:  I have been practising for 30 years.
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I have a garden wall on a new build that I wish to move out

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I have a garden wall on a new build that I wish to move out to the boundary line and incorporate at the same time a side gate entrance that I currently do not have however, according to the council butts up to the cartilage and have been refused but i still have to maintain the area that is currently between the current wall and my boundary line.
Have had trouble to obtain a RICS conveyancer to draw up the plans for the new wall position.
Can you please advise.
Thank you,
LH
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
When I originally spoke to the council i was advised of the following:My rear garden wall boundary defines the edge of the residential curtilage. To the west of my wall and between the public footpath is a planted buffer which is classed as public open space )irrespective of whether or not this land has been conveyed to me).Planning permission for relocating your rear garden wall to the back edge of the footpath would not be permitted having regard to other similar properties abutting this open space.My answer to one of the points above re relocating the wall to back edge of the footpath is in fact in-correct as my boundary line is some 3-4 feet in from the footpath so, I do not understand their comment on this.
Expert:  F E Smith replied 1 year ago.

How tall is this wall and how far from the boundary is it now (3-4ft?) and how far is it from the highway now?

With regard to the new gate which you wish to install, what will that open out onto?

What is the reason for the council objection?

Drawing the plans would normally be an architects job. Have you not tried to get an architect to do it?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The wall would be 2 metres in height although may have to go slightly higher say, 18inches, reason being is when the footpath was laid, it is a lot higher up and people can now see over the wall where before then, they were unable to look over my wall.I have just re-measured and the wall is currently 11feet in from the boundary at top end to 7' 8" in at back end of the boundary.From the boundary line (see file attached) where i am intending to move my wall to just within by say 6 inches all the way down the length there is to the outside of my boundary line, 6' 5" at top to 5' 2" to back of wall length, clear area of land prior to the footpath.footpath. On the other side of this footpath is open land.The installation of a new garden gate would open out on to my front lawn.In terms of my front lawn (see pic attached), it has been positioned out to the boundary line and all I am doing is to move the wall in-line with the edge of the front lawn along my boundary line. I am in no way trying to encroach to outside my boundary in any shape or form. Another house further up has put up picket fences to within a feet of the footpath!The councils rejection was as follows:They said that the my rear garden wall boundary defines the edge of the residential curtilage. To the west of my wall and between the public footpath is a planted buffer (no planted buffer in place after 2.5yrs of living here) which is classed as public open space irrespective of whether or not this land has been conveyed to me. Planning permission for relocating my rear garden wall to the back edge of the footpath (this is not correct as their is open space of land from the new position of my garden wall to the back edge of the footpath) would not be permitted having regard to the original purpose of the land, the need to retain the planted buffer and the impact this would have with regard to other similar properties abutting this open space.I have contacted a couple of architects of which one after making payment and their assessment said that i would need to instruct a conveyance or similar to draw up the plans to scale as required by the council but they could not do this themselves! The other I tried several times in contacting them via phone and e-mail but no reply.This is why I am now on here to seek actual and correct advice as well as hoping that some recommendations of an architect can be provided to me. If it is of help, I live in East Sussex, approx 15 miles in from Eastbourne.Look forward to your reply.Many thanks,LH
Expert:  F E Smith replied 1 year ago.

There are 2 issues here, one is relatively simple and the other one more complicated.

Even a trainee architect would be able to draw the plans suitable for a planning application or appeal. If you just Google architects in your area, this is not a complicated job at all. The drawing just needs to be to scale and drawn to Land Registry requirements. Even a relatively incompetent architect be capable of doing that.

The other issue here is more complicated. When submitting the application, or the appeal, you need to know exactly how to lay it out and to couch it in terms that the local authority will be reluctant to refuse. That is not an architects job or a solicitors job or a conveyancers job but a planning consultant job.

If you want to get the biggest chance of actually getting this done, then I would suggest that you used a local planning consultant who will know what is in the mind of the LPA. I would get hold of a planning consultant first because the planning consultant can probably point you in the direction of a suitable architect who can knock up the plans for you.

One of the things that doesn’t help you is the fact that this development is brand-new and the planning permission for the original development was granted with the wall as it is now and presumably, there was some reason for that although unless we see all the notes surrounding, we will never know.

Can I clarify anything for you

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you.Initially it was going to be a fence but the council told the builders they wanted a brick wall to all the houses (5) along this side which the builders obliged.However, the first I knew if this ease hen I turned up early one morning to see how the build was progressing and saw that a wall wax being built in line with the side of my house but the others was being built away from the their houses so each had a return.When I questioned the site team, I was told this was the councils requirements and as for the postponing of my wall it is as per the plans agreed with council planning. This I was told is the black line on the plans and not to my boundary line or within a few inches and that I would have to take it up with the council. This meant it being a costly process for me when it could so easily have been done at time of build but you know the outcome.I will look for a planning person to assist me in hopefully bring more successful this time round.A quick question, why is it that builders do not build to of just within the boundary line?This even more so when they laid my front lawn out to the boundary line but not the wall?Thank you.LH
Expert:  F E Smith replied 1 year ago.

It is these stipulations by the local authority such as saying it must be a wall and not a fence and the fact that this is a new build which is going to be problematical.

There is absolutely no reason why (other than planning consent) the builders cannot build right up to the boundary line.

This little bit of amenity land is not the responsibility of the local authority but your responsibility although you can’t actually do anything with it. In that respect, you can let it go to rack and ruin and get covered in brambles and the local authority can do nothing about it provided it is not covered in rubbish but just overgrown.

In that respect, areas like this are not necessarily a good idea if the landowner decides to ignore it.

What the local authority are after of course is a little bit of a verge to make the place look prettier without them having the liability or maintaining it.

I can see no reason why, now the house is built, that youcould not simply demolish the wall and leave the whole place open plan.

Unfortunately, you cannot build a wall higher than 2 m without planning permission if it is adjacent to the highway which this is.

You may find that in the planning consent, the ability for you to build a wall less than 2 m adjacent to the highway has been specifically excluded.it may be necessary to study the local area plan and your individual permission.

What you may not want of course is a completely open plan garden in the short term.

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