Building over foul sewer

15 May 2005
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United Kingdom

I hope this is in the right section. I am in the process of purchasing a bungalow which was built in 1935. It and the local properties were joined to the foul sewer in the seventies.

There is a rear garden which I was planning to put a timber framed garage/workshop in. But I have just had all the paperwork through and the foul sewer runs down the back of the garden and out to the road almost exactly where I was hoping to put the rear wall of my new garage.

Will this cause a problem? Is it better/possible to have the sewer moved or can you put a concrete base above it without problems.

I realise I will not get an exact answer but am interested in people experience.

Many thanks

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It depends on the class of the sewer. If it's not more than 150mm (300mm in some areas) and does not serve a large estate then the sewer authority will be fairly relaxed about it. If it's more than 300mm they will not normally allow you to build within 3m. If it's a real biggie not within 5m.

If they allow you to build then technically it's not normally a problem. There are ways.

Bear in mind that they will retain an easement over the pipe in case it needs to be repaired or replaced. That means they can come and knock your workshop down if they need to - extremely unlikely so probably not a concern.

Either way you must make an application and gain approval. The application fee depends on the class?

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