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Latest posts by Birdy13

Neighbour's Garden is Damaging our Wall

Posted: 17/09/2013 at 19:16


Gail Peacock wrote (see)

 But his patio isn't higher than the back of his house (it's a little lower in fact), which suggests that the patio may have been built up from the original ground level.  

Gail: I'm not sure what you mean by 'the back of his house'.

1. If you mean his 'back garden' then logically, if his patio is lower than the rest of the garden,  that would suggest the ground was dug out to accommodate the new patio in order to avoid causing damp problems to buildings - in other words, it was not the neighbour's patio that has caused your damp problem.

2. If, however, you mean his patio is only 'a little lower' than his DPC level (or equivalent) AND if by 'a little lower' you mean less than 6 inches, this could mean the patio has been laid on top of the (then) existing ground level and that whoever is responsible for building the patio would seem to have done so irresponsibly because it has raised the ground level too much -  but even then, only if it can be proved that water levels and 'splash back' of rain are the cause of your damp problem (And not, for example, an underground water course).

It is also important to see which way the water runs off his patio:

Does it run...

  1. into his garden (as it should)?
  2. back towards his house? This could be very destructive for his house and means shoddy building and disregard of levels and own property.
  3. Sideways towards your house? This could explain your damp problem and also means shoddy building and disregard of levell and risk to neighbouring property.


They are just a few  considerations that might help you define the problem and ascertain liability.

Neighbour's Garden is Damaging our Wall

Posted: 17/09/2013 at 13:36

It seems that two of the (as yet) unanswered questions are:

1. Does your neighbour's patio actually raise the original level of the ground? Or...

2. ...was material removed from the top before laying the patio to result in a finished patio which is no higher than what was originally there?

There is one way you might be able to determine that, or at least get some idea: you could try to compare his patio level with his own damp course, if there is one. If there isn't one, then just below the lower cross rail (doorstep) of his door.

If the top of his patio is less than 6 inches from the damp course (or equivalent level) it could indicate a possibility that building the patio raised the original ground level.

I'm not a builder so you need a someone more expert than me to confirm the 6 inch criteria, especially if the property is very old.

I just remember building a patio at my last house (1950s) in ignorance of the risks attached to it ending up only 3 or 4 inches from the damp course.

Fortunately, I found out in time to ensure there was a much lower channel right next to the wall so the DPC was not breached and splash back of heavy rain didn't create a problem But it was not a satisfactory way to build the patio. I could have caused my own house huge problems.

I'm glad we had the whole thing dug out a few years later for a properly built conservatory, so all subsequent damp risks were resolved for us and our subsequent buyers.

GardenIng jokes

Posted: 10/09/2013 at 23:33

(Here's one from "the olden days")

There was this bobby on the beat (see what I mean by "olden days") who noticed a dodgy looking fellow wheeling a barrow up the road with a huge sack on it.

When he stopped him he insisted the fellow opened up the sack. "Certainly, officer," says the shifty fellow and he opens up the sack. Inside there's a load of straw.

"All paid for," said the shifty guy. The policeman checked this out and found it was true.

The next day he saw him again and again he was wheeling the wheelbarrow which held a huge sack, so the policeman made him open it up again. As before it was full of straw. The policeman have him an inquiring and 'suspicious policeman look'.
"'For me rabbits," explained the shifty guy.

This happened every day for two weeks - every time the policeman checked the sack it was full of straw.

It started to wear him down - he couldn't get out of his head the idea the shifty guy was up to something but he was blowed if he knew what.

In the end he stopped the shifty fellow once more and told him bluntly that he knew he was up to something and demanded he told him what it was.

He said he wouldn't charge him with anything but it was driving him crazy and he insisted on knowing why the shifty fellow was moving sacks of straw up the road every evening.

"You won't charge me with anything? says the shifty fellow.
"That's right," says the policeman.
"Promise?" says the shifty fellow.
"God's honour!" agrees the policeman.
"We'll... "
"Just tell me ," the policeman almost pleads.
The shifty fellow leans forward and whispers in the policeman's ear: "I'm knocking off wheelbarrows."

What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 09/09/2013 at 17:40
East Anglia: blue sky earlier, Got washing out. Collected half and left half - which got soaked in a downpour which crept up on me all surreptitious like!  

The Bully and the Policeman

Posted: 09/09/2013 at 16:23

Got it!

The Bully and the Policeman

Posted: 09/09/2013 at 16:20

So, if I've read between the lines correctly, would I be accurate in saying it was a case of 'Justice' both giving and taking away? 

... and eventually making sure that Justice was 'done'?

The Bully and the Policeman

Posted: 09/09/2013 at 15:06

Did the situation resolve eventually, Waterbutts? 

The Bully and the Policeman

Posted: 09/09/2013 at 13:43

The Bully and the Policeman

Posted: 09/09/2013 at 12:51


Amazingly there have already been 460 hits on this thread - thank you all those who have visited.

Granted that tea drinker's experiences are just one example of the terrible neighbour problems that people have to put up with - but the way everything can be compounded and worsened by 'withheld protection' of indifferent local authorities has in her case become an issue in itself.


Over a decade ago, when my wife and I were suffering from a longstanding antisocial neighbour problem, Jack Straw, the then Home Secretary (I think) initiated a real push to give local authorities extra powers to deal with such situations. At the time it seemed like a godsend. But where are we now?

It occurs to me that there are others out there who are suffering not only from antisocial neighbours but also like tea drinker from similar 'withheld protection' of indifferent authorities - but specifically in the case of neighbour problems with a garden theme, if possible.

Why not continue the use of this thread to record your experiences of dilatory or ineffective help from local authorities.

We should still keep tea drinker's thread separate - since, as anyone reading it will know, her experience has become a real saga (incidentally,  'A Social Saga' was one of my original working titles for The Bully and the Policeman).


What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 08/09/2013 at 22:07

East Anglia: Damp and dull earlier, became brighter until 4ish when the the rain started - just after I got out to cut my hedge with electric hedge trimmer - not good idea to carry on!

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