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F E Smith
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10257
Experience:  I have been practising for 30 years.
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We have some issue with our neighbor. He is single man in s

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we have some issue with our neighbor. He is single man in his 50-ties. We have never seen any of his family or friends coming around. So he is lonely. And he likes watching and following us- i.e If I am doing some gardening he will come out into his garden and will do some gardening as well at exactly the same spot on the side of the fence which I find spooky as I can hear him breathing. If we are making bbq he will stand on the side and cough for long period. Every time we are in the garden he will be there too. If we are not, he is not there. Our dog walker said he watches her to arrive through front window then follows her into our garden when she takes our dog onto grass. when she is back in the house, he is back into his,
Any time we do a bit of diy, we will get letter from council for noise making, even for 1 nail. We used hand saw some Sunday to cut some wood and he shouted from the other side that we are not allowed diy on Sunday. We said it is a hand saw not a power tool. He replied he can still hear it. Of course he can because all he does is follows us into his garden and stands on the other side. Few days later another letter from council.
Last time we had some friends, he said they have scratched his car whilst parking- which is absolutely impossible as it was parked on his driveway damaged side close to the fence (not the street). When my husband pointed it, he said I am still calling the police.
Then later I noticed that if I meet him on the street he will stare at me and say hi only If I said it first. If I don't he would simply look and walk passed.
We have asked him many times to leave us alone, but he says he has no idea what we talking about. I know all this sounds very strange, but he is driving us mental. We try to ignore him as much as we can. But he keeps reminding about himself.
Last month we had bloke from council saying we have some illegal building going on, he checked and was very confused that there is absolutely nothing going on. But.. later came back saying there is another complaint that our brick bbq is build incorrectly. .. which is not and has nothing to do... well .. We both work long hours and only at home on weekends and would like to enjoy our free time instead of dealing with all of this. we even started fighting between ourselves now because of tension.
Is there anything at all I could tell him to stop all this nonsense.

How many times has this man the police about you, complain to the council about you, complain about anything else?

Do you have the dates and the times when he’s been complaining about the saw or the nail?

Incidentally, there is nothing to stop anyone doing DIY on a Sunday or using a petrol lawnmower (for example) to cut the grass!

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
thank you for your response, We had 4 letters from council, 2 visits. Every letter mentions BUILDING WORKS- not diy which is not true. Our other neighbour (good friend) knows somebody from council and mentioned her heard we have many complaints against us- o might be many more but without any action from council. Honestly I don't care much about actual complaints as they never find anything. But I am very tired of him watching and following. Even thou I totally understand that he has every right to be in his own garden. We tried to knock on the door as speak, but he would never answer, only communicates from behind the fence.

Although this is common law nuisance, you will be better dealing with this under the Protection from Harassment Act.

Harassment is a course of action (more than twice) which is intended to harass, the culprit is reckless as to whether it harasses, does harass, or the average man in the street would think that it was harassment. It doesn’t necessarily have to be intentional.

It’s unlikely that the police will prosecute purely because of the lack of evidence to prove harassment, beyond all reasonable doubt. However, by all means complain to the police but before doing that, make sure that you have the dates and the times of the incidences when the neighbour has complained not only to the police (they will get fed with him) but also any complaints that he has made to anywhere else.

Make a note also of the dates and the times and the incidences when he has followed you into the garden and simply waits on the other side of the fence waiting for you to knock a nail in.

A civil claim on the other hand does not have to be decided beyond all reasonable doubt but merely, on the balance of probabilities which is 1% more in your favour and you win.

He doesn’t have to harass you directly, he can harass you through a third party by making constant complaints which is what he is doing.

Your remedy is to apply to court for an injunction to prevent him making these spurious complaints against you and to prevent him speaking to you. The threat of that and the threat of court costs might make him be more reasonable although you may find that people like this will think that they are quite justified in doing what they are doing.

That threat of court proceedings and legal costs will have more weight coming from a solicitor.

Can I clarify anything for you?

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We can still exchange emails if you wish.

Best wishes.


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Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you very much. I need to digest all this information and record everything. I know our dog walker very respectable retired woman would confirm him doing the same. I even have text exchange from her saying- your neighbour is weirdo, he is watching and following me etc.. Thank you FES