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Remus2004, Barrister
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 71048
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice.
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Hello, My neighbours recently sold their field behind my

Customer Question


My neighbours recently sold their field behind my house / rear fence to developers. The developers put a planning application in for approx. 40 houses. Most of the immediate neighbours objected. The planning application has currently been withdrawn. I note that my neighbours have now planted a row of bushes immediately behind my 1.8m high fence in what can only be a deliberate attempt to block my view when they start to grow high. What are my rights?
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  Remus2004 replied 4 years ago.
Thank you for your question. My name is Jo and I will try to help with this.

If they are evergreen then they can be made to cut them down to 2 m high by the local authority

Provided they a block more than 50% of your light, you have a claim potentially for breach of the right to light however it seems most unlikely that it will be a reduction of anything like 50% I'm afraid.

The bad news however is that even if 2 m high, they block your view, legally you have no right to a view

I'm sorry this isn't the answer you wanted but it is the position that you face and I have a duty to inform you truthfully.

Hope this helps. Please let me know if you need more information.


Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thank you for your response.

I have read the following regarding my rights to light:


The Rights of Light Act 1959 states that if a Property has received daylight for the last 20 years (the minimum prescribed period), they may be entitled to continue to receive that light. This means that if your neighbour builds a large fence or there are large trees which restrict the daylight your Property receives (for example by blocking daylight reaching a window), you may be able to apply to the courts for your daylight to be restored, or for any injunction to prevent a proposed fence being built.


What do you make of this?


I have also read the following regarding my (limited) rights to a view:


The one exception is that the neighbour cannot deliberately block your
view with a structure that has no use to your neighbour. For example, your neighbour cannot put up a billboard, as it serves no reasonable purpose but to block your view.


What do you make of this?






Expert:  Remus2004 replied 4 years ago.
Yes, I mentioned that earlier. However your light has to be reduced by 50% before it becomes actionable.

It does not apply to light on the garden but only to rooms although it also applies to non-habitable rooms such as a garage.

I think you would struggle to prove that a hedge serves no reasonable purpose because it is actually a garden feature.

In any event, there are actually cases where the neighbours have done exactly that, put an obstruction up simply to block the light where the right to light has been excluded specifically in the deeds and the claimant has lost.

Whether there is a potential claim there depend on whether the right to light is excluded in your deeds or whether they are deliberately doing this to be a nuisance. A claim in nuisance is something else altogether.

Based upon what you have told me, I do not think you have a cause of action.

I’m sorry that this is bad news for you