As we move towards spring the weather begins to change, we start to spend more time outdoors and new tree growth occurs. Trees that we might not have paid much attention to over winter appear larger, growing leaves can block out light and trees in full leaf may cast shade over gardens. These are the kind of situations that can lead to disagreements between neighbours.
Neighbour disputes also arise over who looks after shared garden areas, especially in flats with communal gardens. Normally property deeds, especially with flats, will clearly define rules on keeping shared facilities maintained. Dealing with disputes over blocking out light can be costly to take to court however and you have no legal right to cut down a tree in a neighbour’s garden.
When a neighbour doesn’t take care of their garden, trees growing in it have the potential to cause damage to your property. If your neighbour owns a tree it’s their responsibility to make sure it doesn’t damage your property or cause an obstacle, for example growing roots.
Disputes are best dealt with sensitively, wherever possible and it’s always best to try to resolve such disputes amicably. If neighbours can’t come to an agreement, in some cases the local authority environmental health officer (EHO) may be able to help you get resolution.
Artemis often works on trees that overhang gardens or cause issues between neighbours. The case study below involved Artemis helping a group of neighbours collaborate on reducing trees surrounding their properties in North London which were affecting them all.
Four separate households were involved and seven large trees were affecting their properties. The group of neighbours agreed to work together and employed Artemis to help them navigate the job. We arranged quotes and permission forms, setting out which tree belonged to which household. Artemis dealt with arranging the necessary consent from the local council on behalf of the group to do the work.
The job involved reducing trees in back gardens with no direct road access and carefully removing branches through houses.
Some of the trees were in front gardens, so Artemis had to work over pavements and a road which involved arranging parking suspensions, setting out cones and warning signs, and deploying groundsman to keep watch for pedestrians and cars.
Once the job was completed, Artemis issued several invoices, splitting the total amount over the four households at their request.
With careful management and cooperation the trees were reduced and all the parties involved were delighted with the outcome.