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Matt Jones
Matt Jones, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 671
Experience:  I am a qualified and practising Solicitor with over 7 years post qualification experience
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Hello. I have an issue with certain similarities to this as

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Hello. I have an issue with certain similarities to this as follows:- a) I have a house on a minor road with it's own block paving parking space alongside it. b) Right next to the parking space is my neighbour's house. The block paving of my parking space abuts to the wall of my neighbour's house. c) but, in the middle of my neighbour's wall, is a small chimney breast, which sticks out of the wall by some 6 inches or so. d) the difficulty is that my neighbour claims i) that "the 6 inch parallel area" belongs to her and that ii) by virtue of this, the whole parking space is in fact a shared one. e) the significance of this is that I'd previously kept my bins at the back of my parking space, but within this 6 inch area (but not touching the wall). This she objects to, and so, sometimes with another neighbour, she regularly walks onto and through the parking area to the back, and moves them into the middle of the parking space. f) my neighbour has her own parking space on her side of her house. It's been suggested that I should stroll onto her parking space, and start moving her bins around - perhaps the neighbour's too, but I'm not sure that's the answer. g) the deeds simply show a straight line with the parking space simply showing as mine. The block paving extends right up to the neighbour's house wall (including the 6 inch bit). The configuration of the two houses has not changed for 25 to 30 years. I have been here for 14 years, my neighbour for about 3. The relationship is very poor (this has gone on since my neighbour moved in, and includes her insistence that because of her claimed shared ownership, any friends of mine need to ask her permission to park there - and are fairly abruptly challenged by her if they do). She is now threatening, whilst I'm at work, to put a bollard on the corner of the 6 inch area by the road which would prevent anyone, including me, from using my parking space (on what is my block paving. Because the parking space is restricted, this would prevent anyone, including me, from using it). To try and keep the peace, I did move the bins to the other side of the parking space for some months, but this unpleasant challenge keeps coming to friends who park there. I'd be grateful for advice and options. With kind regards, ***** *****

p.s. there is no window on the neighbour's wall abutting my parking space. There is a downstairs window in my wall from the kitchen which kind of overlooks down onto my parking space (in fact, it overlooks steps [at the bottom of which are the bins at the back of my parking space] which lead into my back garden. The view from that particular window is the wall - without windows - of my neighbour's house. C. 02.11.2014

Also included are Land Registry photos, and photos of the properties at issue - hopefully self explanatory either as written on the Land Registry photos as to which house belongs to whom, or for the property photos (my house is the one with the window, with the Parking Space 3 photo taken from the road. The other 2 photos are taken from my back garden going down the steps to the parking space. The bins are shown as having again been moved by my neighbour across from the small ingress from the neighbours chimney to the bottom of the steps up to my back garden. Looking at it again, the chimney sticks out about 12 inches from the wall rather than the 6 inches I've referred to above. Looking in from the road on the right hand side, there is a raised garden area on my side. Unfortunately, this cannot be moved (underneath are foundations in effect underpinning my 1850s house. My neighbour's house was built in the early 1980s). Long story, but originally my house and what was then I believe large sheds were owned by the same person, who knocked down the sheds, and built my neighbour's house (and renovated mine) to today's current configuration. The bollard my neighbour tells me she is planning is to be located either (from the photo looking in from the road) to the right hand side in line with her chimney by the stack of leaves shown, or, again in line with the chimney, but by the road - perhaps she's planning both. Not sure that a reputable builder would do this, but I understand her partner is a local farmer who perhaps would (and as a farmer's son myself, I would know both how to do it, and to remove it, though today I no longer easily have access to the relevant equipment). You'll note also the

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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hello Nicola. Yes, I can wait - there's no particular hurry. The final sentence was meant to read as follows, but I think is no more than a repeat from above.

"You'll note also the parking space is a restricted one, so putting a bollard there is really going to make it difficult to manoevre a car into it. I guess my real query here is a) what in fact is the status of my parking space - if it is not completely mine, what proportion of it is my neighbour's, and what consequence, if any, does that have for me. For example, if she owns just the 6 / 12 inch strip, does that mean she can walk all over the rest of it..? and b) can she put one or more bollards up in the places I've described thus preventing me, or anybody else, from using it - leave alone damaging the value of my property. The bins issue is a minor thing I can live with. Needless to say, this wasn't mentioned by anyone when I moved in here. C. 02.11.14"

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Thank you for your patience,
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

ok. Thank you. C.

Hi I will try and help.
A few questions
1) do you have your own deed plan? If so can you attach? Can you get and attach a copy of the office copies of your title as well?
2) I notice that there are some steps at the rear of the drive, which I presume leads to the garden area you have described. Is this solely your garden and does your neighbour have any reason to use them?
3) Has your neighbour ever parked in the parking bay in question, or anyone before her?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hello Matt,

On 1) I think I've sent as requested - a copy of my deed plans + cover pages. I also have a "Completion of Registration" document dated June 2004, which doesn't appear to add anything (but confirms Land Registry Edition dated 9th June 2004, and title number BM94453), and confirms "title absolute". My apologies as I seem to have double uploaded a couple of them.

2) It does. The garden is walled / wooden fenced in, and is solely my garden. My neighbour has no reason to access it, and is unable to other than through the entrance shown in the (earlier) photo (i.e. through my parking space, up the steps, and through a gate that is normally closed.

3) No - never to both. I did once offer the space to the previous (lovely) neighbour to use about 5/6 years ago when she was renovating her house to park a skip on it for about a week, which she took up (for which she very kindly offered her workman to paint my garden shed when she renovated her / our garden fence) - but she was a very different kind of neighbour.

Thank you for your help with this. Now for a glass of wine to finish the day.

With kind regards,

Chris Tucker

Thanks for that Chris
I have looked at the various plans you have provided me. the issue with plans of this nature is that they are quite large scale and so don't show much details. they are only supposes to be for illustration only. However on considering the plans next to one another what is clear is that there is straight boundary between both houses.
If you followed the logic of your neighbour and the boundary line ran parallel with the chimney breast then this would follow all the way down the garden and deprive you of 12 inches of the entire westerly boundary of your property. This logically cannot be a sustainable argument.
I think that you need to look back any any old plans that you may have, and also see if you can obtain any of the conveyances referred to in your neighbours title (if any) to see if there is any evidence of how the boundaries were treated when your neighbours property was built. however it seems to me more logical that the chimney is an "encroachment" onto your land than the other way round. There is nothing you can do about the chimney as its been there too long (and I guess you wouldn't want to do anything either) but I think you have a strong argument that the land to either side of it is yours.
Ultimately the matter would be best assessed by a surveyor, who could do proper measurements and compare them to the land registry plans and any other plans you could get, but I would suggest you employ a solicitor to write a stiff letter to your neighbour outlining your case for the land and putting her on notice that if anything is done to block you, you will seek a preventative injunction.
there is a secondary argument and that is that you have been parking in the space for many years, and likely the owners before you. A right can be gained over land where owners have used something interrupted for 20 years. Even if the above argument is wrong after measurement are take (which I simply can't see being the case, but there is always a remote possibility), then you could advance an argument that by being deprived of the implied right to park (on the disputed little bit of land that is, you are of course entitled to park on your part) you are entitled to obtain an injunction or claim damages.
I hope this helps you fight your cause
Matt Jones, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 671
Experience: I am a qualified and practising Solicitor with over 7 years post qualification experience
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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Matt,

Thank you for your sensible and reassuring answer. Next step I think the surveyor to lock this down once and for all, and next the solicitor's letter as / if appropriate.

With kind regards,

Chris - 08.11.14