Your browser isn't supported
It looks like you're using an old web browser. To get the most out of the site and to ensure guides display correctly, we suggest upgrading your browser now. Download the latest:

Welcome to the MSE Forums

We're home to a fantastic community of MoneySavers but anyone can post. Please exercise caution & report spam, illegal, offensive or libellous posts/messages: click "report" or email forumteam@.

Search
  • FIRST POST
    • ozgi
    • By ozgi 14th May 18, 12:57 AM
    • 11Posts
    • 4Thanks
    ozgi
    Garden Grabbing Developer Possibly Stealing Unadopted Road - Is This Permissible?
    • #1
    • 14th May 18, 12:57 AM
    Garden Grabbing Developer Possibly Stealing Unadopted Road - Is This Permissible? 14th May 18 at 12:57 AM
    Hello all

    Question about a developer 'repurposing' an unadopted dirt track without permission here if you wouldn't mind:

    Myself and 48 of my neighbours are currently fighting a war of attrition against a garden grabbing developer who have been trying unsuccessfully for 3 years to gain planning to build a small housing estate at the end of our peaceful 1930's suburban London cul de sac.

    Effectively they wanted to bulldoze 2 1930's semis with very big gardens and build 25 new properties on the land.

    Since early 2015 we have defeated 3 different applications & their relevant appeals, it's been heard before 2 Central government departments who both agreed with the objections and we have our MP on our side being very helpful - overall we have done a pretty good job so far of keeping them at bay.

    One of the main points within their various plans that the council found objectionable is that demolishing this adjoining pair of original 1903's semi's would negatively affect the character of the road - in short it would look really stupid and out of place in a road that has no buildings other than 1930's bay fronted houses.

    In what seems to be their last gasp attempt the developers latest planning application (number 4 now) involves retaining the 2 houses in question exactly as they are now but bulldozing their gardens to build a smaller development of 6 new homes with garages. The problem is there is no proprietary access to this currently-garden site if the 2 x 1930's houses out front are retained. Its completely encircled by other houses, gardens and a railway line.

    The developers way of getting around this now is that they intend to tarmac a 20m strip of a very narrow (less than 4m wide), existing, unadopted, single lane dirt track access road next to one of the houses. The track is not owned by any property according to Land Registry, and has been used by all of the houses on that side of the cul de sac since 1930 for access to the rear of their houses since they were built! The track is frequently used by neighbours and there will be no question of it being disused or unnecessary etc.

    I have verified that this road is not on the deeds of the property in question and Land Registry have not yet been able to tell me who does actually own it - if anyone. I expect the owner was the original (now long-gone) small time developer in the 1930's who bought the land off the local landowner, but did not include it in the deeds to any of the houses it built and sold. Goodness knows who owns the assets of this defunct entity now...

    My question is this - are these garden grabbers now allowed to tarmac this unadopted track that we all use, and repurpose it as the sole access to a development of a 6 house estate in this way without actually owning it?

    I'm not implying at this stage that they are claiming ownership or that they will stop the rest of us using the road afterwards, but can they just go ahead and temporarily shut it off for a few days / weeks in order to tarmac around 20 metres of it and then increase its usual daily traffic 30 to 40-fold?

    Im looking for legal opinion / facts here, not so much opinions on the Planning aspects / arguments.

    Many thanks in advance
Page 2
    • borkid
    • By borkid 14th May 18, 2:14 PM
    • 1,823 Posts
    • 3,684 Thanks
    borkid

    Sometimes in a situation like this it is best to "allow" a less bad scheme. They are talking of 6 new houses now, not 25. This is just like in a village I used to live, and the proposal was for a lot of houses then a few less etc, until it got to a proposal for 5 houses and the head of the Parish council stood up at the public meeting and said "For heavens sake let them build these 5 houses it is infinitely better than any scheme proposed before"
    Originally posted by ProDave
    Something similar to this happened near where I used to live. A farmer wanted to build a house on his land. The locals objected due to the increase in traffic. The application was turned down but the farmer could still build farm buildings on it which he did. So the locals now have a large ugly metal barn and lots more tractors using the road. Own goal really.
    • ozgi
    • By ozgi 14th May 18, 2:27 PM
    • 11 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    ozgi
    Thanks all

    Im fairly certain the new application will be turned down anyway as many of the previous objections successfully made still stand, plus we will work every angle when it comes to planning and this tiny access road

    Sounds like the legal route for objecting to redevelopment of the dirt track may not work but some interesting points made here nevertheless thanks again
    • lincroft1710
    • By lincroft1710 14th May 18, 4:10 PM
    • 10,801 Posts
    • 9,066 Thanks
    lincroft1710
    You didn't like the suggestion that you should pay for legal advice, but you do need professional advice i.e. a planning consultant or similar. You are opposing a developer who will keep on pushing applications and the odds are that they will get one of these through. Other posters and myself have all seen this happen.
    • ProDave
    • By ProDave 14th May 18, 4:51 PM
    • 939 Posts
    • 1,056 Thanks
    ProDave
    You can't use the "wet tarmac" argument, as unlike concrete, "wet" tarmac can be driven on as soon as it has been rollered.
    • ozgi
    • By ozgi 14th May 18, 8:08 PM
    • 11 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    ozgi
    You didn't like the suggestion that you should pay for legal advice, but you do need professional advice i.e. a planning consultant or similar. You are opposing a developer who will keep on pushing applications and the odds are that they will get one of these through. Other posters and myself have all seen this happen.
    Originally posted by lincroft1710

    Like I said, I think we have the planning aspect covered. I came on here for the legal implications (if any) of the access road being repurposed / resurfaced.

    The developer has used a Planning Consultant of their own and we have been fairly unimpressed with their work, so I'm not convinced such a consultant can do better than we can ourselves with Planning.
    • ozgi
    • By ozgi 14th May 18, 8:19 PM
    • 11 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    ozgi
    You didn't like the suggestion that you should pay for legal advice, but you do need professional advice i.e. a planning consultant or similar. You are opposing a developer who will keep on pushing applications and the odds are that they will get one of these through. Other posters and myself have all seen this happen.
    Originally posted by lincroft1710

    Like I said, I think we have the planning aspect covered. I came on here for the legal implications (if any) of the access road being repurposed / resurfaced.

    The developer has used a Planning Consultant of their own and we have been fairly unimpressed with their work, so I'm not convinced such a consultant can do better than we can ourselves with Planning.
Welcome to our new Forum!

Our aim is to save you money quickly and easily. We hope you like it!

Forum Team Contact us

Live Stats

2,862Posts Today

9,600Users online

Martin's Twitter