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Thomas, Lawyer
Category: UK Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 7432
Experience:  BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
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Hi, I have a country stone built cottage as part of a terraced

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Hi, I have a country stone built cottage as part of a terraced row of five. At the back of these properties is an unadopted lane wide enough for two cars and there is an assortment of outbuildings beyond. This lane is a dead end for vehicles. I have parked my car for over 10 years on this lane outside my house and on the side of my house. My next door neighbour, who recently acquired the property, has renovated this and his corresponding outbuildings. He has relaid some paving outside the outbuildings but at a different height to the original which now makes it difficult or impossible for vehicles to drive over this. As a result, if I park my car in the 'usual' place, other neighbours wishing to have vehicle access find it difficult to pass my car and the modified paving and have been complaining to me. Where do I stand?


Thanks for your question.


Is the paving that he has laid exlcusively within the legal title to his property? if not, who owns the title on which the paving has been laid?


Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I am sure you will know boundaries in country area are often poorly defined. My deeds gives me title to the buildings both side of this lane but not the lane itself between the building lines. I believe, but not sure, that his is similar. I understand the council has not adopted the lane as then they would be responsible for maintenance. I am not aware of anyone owning the lane.



Thanks for your reply.


Ownership of the land on which the paving has been laid is crucial here. If your title does not retain a express right of vehicular access over the land then the fallback is to claim a legal right of access by prescription.


Unless you have been exercising a right (ie. of vehicular access over the lane) for a period of 20 years then you cannot claim this right against the owner.


If you had acquired a right by prescription you could stop him from using the land in such a way so as to deny you this right. As it stands in the absenence of this and an express right then it will be for the person who owns the land to require that suitable covering for vehicular access is reinstated.


You will have to check your title to see if there are express rights for access subject to perhaps an agreement to contribute (jointly with others) to the maintenance of the lane until adoption. If there are then you (and others) can enforce this against him.


To check who owns the lane you will need to carry out an index map search via the appropriate land registry office that deals with the title to the property. You can do this by submitting the Lr's Form SIM from the following page, together with a map showing the area and their requisite fee (you can check with them_:-


If this is useful please kindly click accept so that I may be rewarded for my time. You wll be free to ask follow up questions.

Kind regards,


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