Soak Away

21 Apr 2004
Reaction score
United Kingdom
Hello All,

A bit of advice if I may. Our house was build around 1985, our next door neighbors garage roof drains off into a soak away in our garden which was about 4 metres from the rear of our house. You can see where the soak away was as the lawn has sunk a little.

Now, we had a conservatory build, 6mtr wide across the back of the house and 4 metres out. The builder found the soak away when he was digging the foundations. He left the soakaway where it was and added a second pipe which takes the rainwater from our conservatory roof and fed that into the soakway too.

This soak away is now literally 6 inches from the footing of our conservatory and with our conversatory roof being 6mtr x 4mtr that is a lot of water to going into it.

My question is, will this soakaway be ok where it is or will it cause us any problems. I believe that building regs state 5m from property, but does this count in this case.

We have been in contact with the conservatory people about this and they said it is ok where it is and are not willing to relocate it.

What do you guys think, any advice please


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Watch Monty Python and the Holy Grail & pay particular attention to the Kings story about building his castles ;)

Its absolutely ludicrous to have a building built ontop of a soakaway - how deep are the foundations, if there not below the bottom of the soakaway already theres a big problem before any erosion kicks in.
I believe that the footings are about 18 inches or so, not sure how deep the soakaway was, but the footings will not be deeper than the soakaway.

If the conservatory company will not relocate the soakaway, is there anything I can do to make them ?

Thanks for all your advice

You`ve got 2 choices :cry: 1....The Law££££££££££ 2 hire a digger do a new soakaway .they aren`t rubble filled nowadays, checkout Marley Drainage via the web........underpin the joke footing . Send the bill to the Co. and Name and Shame them here and everywhere you can :evil: Personally I`d do option 2.
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Can I get someone like the local council building regs involved, or will they not be interested ?

The conservatory has been up for about 6 months, will the footings have suffered any damage in this time or will they be ok ?

Thanks for all your guys info on this one, much appreciated.
Forgot to mention, we have the downpipe from the roof about 10 feet away from the soakaway, can we just redirect the pipes into that ? I don't know where that soakaway goes, probably into the other neighbors garden.
conservatories are for the most part b.c. exempt, so the work shy gits get away with anything. 18 inch footing.. tut tut...shocking!!!
Hi, that to do with a (patio) door into conservatory?
yep. so long as you have an external spec door separating habitable from conservatory, then b.c. try not to get involved. planning and boundary disputes are a whole different animal!!! it helps if the conservatory has its own heating system too.

I had an extension built a couple of years ago and the builders placed the new soakaways five feet away from the footings. They said, and they are a reputale firm, that this was the building regulation law. Makes good sense, too.
Thanks Noseall.....anectdote coming up .......30 years ago I did a job in my village and put a soakaway in front of a cottage against the footpath next to the road.nowhwere else to go :eek: 4 feet from wall.......and the cottage is still standing and my guttering is still there ;) :LOL:

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