Gap Between Extensions on Neighbouring Terraced Houses

28 Jan 2017
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United Kingdom
We bought a mid-terraced house last year which already had a rear extension. The extension spans the width of the garden, minus about 15cm on both sides (presumably to keep the foundation on our property). On the side next to my neighbour the garden fence ran all the way down the border line from the rear of the garden, past our extension to the midpoint between our two terraces, giving us a 15cm strip of inaccesible land.

For what it's worth, on the other side, it seems a sensible compromise was reached where the 15cm-wide strip next to the extension was ceded to the neighbours and the fence runs from the end of our extension to the border line at the rear of the garden (at a slight unnoticeable diagonal I suppose).

This was all in place when I bought the house last year.

My neighbour loved the extension in place at our house and now has done her own, which is, for all intents and purposes, the same as ours. Accordingly, there is now a gap of about 30cm between our extensions with a depth of roughly 2.5m.

The agreement when she and her builder let me know of the work was that there would be gap between the extensions, either side of the boundary, and they would replace the fence, running it down the length of the garden to the midpoint between the two extensions, and this gap between them would then have a very thin fence panel blocking it up.

That isn't what has happened at all. They have basically done what has happened on the other side of our extension and ceded the inaccessible strip to me and built the fence from the boundary line at the rear of the garden to the edge of their extension.

Please see pics below. The third is how our extension looked when we bought it : gap on left, not on right. Now we have an even bigger gap on the left!

IMG_7824.JPG IMG_7826.JPG 4C94BEC6-779D-41A9-897C-EA953A03BFEA-4822-000008C010FD5505.jpeg

The fence went up in two stages, the majority of it at the rear of the garden went up last week, and the final panel was fixed in place only on Tuesday, after I enquired as to why we spent the weekend with a gap between the gardens, after the final panel blew down due to not being fixed in place with the concrete pillar missing.

Am I fair in complaining that this is not an acceptable final state? It is not as agreed and we are left with the eyesore in our garden, and the job of maintaining the strip of land, which is half theirs. I don't want our cats going down there and there is lots of neighbourhood cats which are bound to use that space. I can't understand why the gap has not been boarded/sealed up as agreed, with the fence running directly to the midpoint of it.

Would this not be the best solution for it too? Certainly the fair, but also the best for asthetics and maintenance? Or is there a better finish I should push for? For example, can I also check whether the gap filling with debris not likely to prove problematic at somepoint, and what if they need to access it to do maintence on their home?

What steps would people suggest me
taking? The neighbour and I have been on friendly terms and I don't want that to change.
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I'd suggest discussing it with them rather then us.
Leaving useless gaps seems like an unnecessary design compromise, but I guess it's quicker to just get on with it?
Put a board across the gap.
Exactly. Surely if you put a panel across the gap, you have the same result as was intended, except that you have an extra 6 inch strip of garden? I don't see the problem and I don't see the point in falling out.
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And this way the OP retains full access for maintenance or let the odd trapped cat out, albeit with taking the fence panel out. A means of mounting the panel in a semi-demountable way would seem appropriate.
Thanks, all. I know it seems that I'm making a mountain out of a molehill, but it's annoying to have a common sense plan with the neighbours, which ends up with you having to do work when they don't follow them. If they had put the fence post just in front of their extension, I would be able to get down between there, but as it is just tucked down the side, I have no chance.

The other things is a big amount of black shielded cable protruding from their wall and laying on the floor. What's this for? Satellite? Will they need to get to it?

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