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To put Christmas lights on my side of a partitioning front fence?

(23 Posts)
Iwillnoteatcheese Sat 06-Dec-14 01:21:08

I moved into a council new build just over a year ago. I get on brilliantly with a couple of neighbours, ok with the others, apart from my next door neighbours on one side. It's a row of 8 new houses, all in one terrace. Open plan front gardens, no partitioning fences allowed. To cut a very long story short, my neighbours on that side have taken a dislike to us (think they don't like having a weird family with 2 special needs kids so close) and in the summer, put a wooden fence between their front garden and mine. Without permission, and they have been told they will have to remove it. But as the council have now agreed to put fencing up, I think they have possibly been allowed to keep it up until the whole street is done next year(!) Anyway I got outdoor lighting today as almost everyone on our little street has it and my house looks drab... I have nobody to help me reach high places (!) so I had a brainwave... put the lighting along our side of the fence! Neighbours who saw me doing it said it looked lovely, my kids loved it. Then later, the doorbell goes. "If you don't take those lights down from my fence I will take them down"! I said no, as it was my side. she said it was HER fence, SHE paid for it and I had no right! Then she tore them down! AIBU to insist on them going back up?

MoreBonkersThanBonkers Sat 06-Dec-14 01:30:36

Your Nieghbours are correct. It's their fence and its up to them what they do with it. I don't think it was the best plan to hang lights on their fence if you had already been arguing about it and you knew your Nieghbours were difficult people.

You could always stick some poles in the ground and hang the lights from them instead.

Iwillnoteatcheese Sat 06-Dec-14 01:44:31

I'm surprised, as these are new council houses, and the fence is 1oo% opaque and it is on my side of the fence? They're not even supposed to put a fence up anyway... They put it up, digging into my lawn to put their posts in, and I of course have the side with all their posts for the fence. Without any consultation with me, or the council. Just five little tacks, going in about a third of the way through the wood at most, to hold some nice lights, to make the most of a shitty situation. And she ripped our lights down. Remember these houses aren't private, but council new builds, which have particular rules.

quietlysuggests Sat 06-Dec-14 02:06:24

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MoreBonkersThanBonkers Sat 06-Dec-14 02:11:35

If they put the fence up it belongs to them. It's as simple as that really. You are not allowed to do anything to it at all.

If it's in your garden then that's a separate matter about which you right to speak to the council
The Nieghbours are in the wrong about the other things but it doesn't alter the fact that it's their fence. I think it would be sensible not to do anything to further irritate them.

You can just hang the lights on some poles or put them around your door. I suspect your neighbours might think you put the lights on the fence just to piss them off.

It's not worth falling out with people over stuff like this.

TimelyNameChangey Sat 06-Dec-14 02:23:20

It's definitely you in the wrong OP. It is their fence...not yours. It also doesn't matter that these are council houses or that the fence was disputed.

Iwillnoteatcheese Sat 06-Dec-14 02:25:49

Deliberately goading them? Now I remember why I don't use this site much any more! I had a fence. I have always had a fence wherever I have lived. Everywhere I have ever lived before, people have seen their side as theirs, the other side as their neighbours to do what they waht with. It's common decency. I have never encountered this kind of selfishness before. I have happily let my neighbours run a bit of washing line over my fence before to secure theirs. Let them remove a fence panel for a furniture delivery. so was hardly goading them or spoiling for a fight to expect that the side of the fence facing my garden would be fine for me to put lights on, which they wouldn't even see!

Iwillnoteatcheese Sat 06-Dec-14 02:34:30

Thanks MoreBonkersThanBonkers for at least seeing some reason. I certainly didn't put the lights there to piss them off, but at the end of the day they put that fence there without any consultation from the council or any word with me, and of course that fence effects the look of my garden, which I guess is a whole other ball game! It's just so friggin' petty! a few pretty lights held on with tiny tacks on my side. Sadly I know it's a bullying thing, this goes far deeper than a few lights. But how petty.

musicalendorphins2 Sat 06-Dec-14 02:53:32

You cannot put decorations, or grow plants, or attach a plant hanger or a clothes line, or paint or do anything whatsoever, to the fence.
However, if you have nice neighbors, they often will say sure go ahead if you ask them about something like a temp. light display.
You can however, shine a few spotlights on it, which can really look nice. Or some of those exterior decorations that are deer or snowmen, or angels that stand on the lawn.

TimelyNameChangey Sat 06-Dec-14 02:56:47

OP your attitude is normal, there's is not. But sadly they're legally in the right. Do you have a tree or bush they could go on?

TimelyNameChangey Sat 06-Dec-14 02:57:03

Theirs. Not there's.

Iwillnoteatcheese Sat 06-Dec-14 02:57:37

I am obviously far too old fashioned. I have this stupid dream of people getting on with each other. Christ I am stupid.

TimelyNameChangey Sat 06-Dec-14 03:01:20

Well no. We also have a horror neighbor so I do know what it's like...I've learned to completely ignore him as though he's not there. The last words I said to him were "Don't you ever address me again...don't even look at me"

And so far he hasn't...win win!

It's a shame when one bad apple spoils something like this but rise above it...don't get involved in disputes...or arguments...find somewhere else for the lights....is there anywhere else?

Iwillnoteatcheese Sat 06-Dec-14 03:02:13

And I tell you something, if I was ever in the position to be able to put up a new fence between myself and a neighbour I would bloody expect them to see their side of it as their own to paint or decorate as they pleased! I am obviously too old fashioned for mumsnet.

TimelyNameChangey Sat 06-Dec-14 03:07:24

Are you even reading my posts? confused

musicalendorphins2 Sat 06-Dec-14 03:09:20

You are not old fashioned or stupid, please don't say that about yourself.
You didn't know, and before we became home owners, I wasn't aware of fence issues and stuff either.
You can make your front yard look nice without hanging stuff right on their fence. Our neighbors across from us have 3 different coloured lights shining ion their wall, it is simple yet really nice. They used to shine them on their tree before the tree was removed.

Iwillnoteatcheese Sat 06-Dec-14 03:10:43

Thanks TimelyNameChangey I can't manage many places and to be honest, it still makes sense to have the lights along the fence. Getting a tree delivered for outside in a few days. I think it's also a bullying thing as they have loads of outside lights as do many of my neighbours, think they relish in our house looking drab in comparison! we are rebels - all the other houses have blinds but I've had enough of them and am sticking to curtains... I must be a weirdo... xx

Iwillnoteatcheese Sat 06-Dec-14 03:16:37

Sorry TimelyNameChangey I did read your posts! Just slow on the reply!

differentnameforthis Sat 06-Dec-14 03:17:17

Everywhere I have ever lived before, people have seen their side as theirs, the other side as their neighbours to do what they what with

Those fences were already in situ though, so you are right in that they wee 'common' property.

these new fences are NOT! They were PURCHASED & erected by one person, therefore the entire entity remains the property of those who bought it.

Iwillnoteatcheese Sat 06-Dec-14 03:30:54

Last neighbours bought new fences and still had the same attitude of expecting their neighbour to use it as their own. I have really never experienced this. Anyway I guess I should take solace in the fact that come summer, the council will insist on it's removal, to make way for the fences that they have agreed to put up. They won't be able to claim that one as theirs.

MoreBonkersThanBonkers Sat 06-Dec-14 18:37:52

Most People either don't mind letting their neighbours use their side of the fence or are unaware of the law so it wouldn't have mattered if you hung lights on your side.

The problem is that you had already fallen out with the neighbours and they had had issues with the fence when you put the lights up. I don't think you should be surprised they are objecting to it.

AlpacaStockingOnChristmasEve Sat 06-Dec-14 21:14:58

I would go and buy an identical fence, then erect <snigger> it one inch from theirs, then hang every frickin light I could get my hands on from my fence, leaving an inch of no-mans-land in between. But I am a childish bitch...

But honestly, you could get some cheap garden canes if you wanted to hang your lights around your garden. arrange them in the shape of the letters T W A and T and maybe an arrow

Iwillnoteatcheese Sun 07-Dec-14 00:21:34

AlpacaStockingOnChristmasEve believe me if I could afford to I would. But I'm in council housing because I can't afford other housing - somehow they can afford new fences all over though... Anyway theirs will be removed come spring when the council put fencing up, and if I could afford to do the same, mine would come down too. You know I genuinely didn't think there would be any objection to me making the best of a bad situation.

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