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Neighbour complaining about our garden lights

357 replies

Slave2love · 25/11/2019 11:09

Very petty and silly subject I know but here goes.
We have a small hedge on the edge of our front lawn to separate our garden from the neighbour's driveway. (Only recently planted, very small at this stage) further in on our lawn we have put a few small solar lights. Next doors drive is only just wide enough to squeeze 2 cars side by side and there is very little room to open doors etc. Until we put the hedge and lights in they were opening their car door fully over our garden in order to get out (also stepping on our land at times). Now I appreciate that we have made it awkward for them to open the doors fully now but surely they are not entitled to use our garden in order to get out of their car? They are new to the street but we knew of them previously and children are actually in the same class at school. Neighbour has asked this morning if we can move the solar lights. All has been pleasant with them up until now despite them being quite selfish neighbours. I could understand if the lights were on the boundary line but they are much further in. I feel it is them who have created the problem by parking 2 cars on a drive only really suitable for one. AIBU to not want to move the lights?

OP posts:
PanamaPattie · 25/11/2019 13:10

Remove the hedge and fence it. The hedge will cause many maintenance problems.

GiveHerHellFromUs · 25/11/2019 13:10

Now we've seen the picture I'd definitely build a wall rather than the hedge because they can complain that the hedge is overhanging and chasing them trouble but a wall on your land is a wall on your land and there's nothing they can do.

PanannyPanoo · 25/11/2019 13:11

Why not move the lights then replant the hedge along your boundary in half barrels or a raised bed a couple of sleepers high.

Scrowy · 25/11/2019 13:14

You need to move your hedge.

It might look well spaced now when the plants are tiny but when it grows it's going to really encroach on their drive and then you will be the one who looks completely unreasonable.

Hedge needs to be where the lights are now. Move the lights to the boundary or put a little fence up in the meantime.

IdleBet · 25/11/2019 13:15

Put a fence up. They sound selfish fuckers after your update.

diddl · 25/11/2019 13:24

Well I'm with you, Op.

Neighbourly to me doesn't mean them using your garden because their drive isn't wide enough for two cars!

Presumably they can't fit the cars in tandem, so one will have to go on the road, won't it?

Belindabelle · 25/11/2019 13:25

I agree with pp. Make the border wider. Move hedging to the right of where the lights are. Get a low level fence right up to the boundary. Move the lights if you want to as they will look a bit daft with a fence. Once the hedge has become established you can remove the fence if you like.
That hedge will take a while to grow. I would maybe plant a bush or conifer in the corner at the wooden border. You could put christmas lights on it.

Fifthtimelucky · 25/11/2019 13:26

Our drive is next to our next door neighbour's garden. It is just about wide enough for our two cars. The same car is parked on the neighbour's side (the left) and I'm the only person who ever drives that car. We always reverse into our drive.

If I'm driving the car on the right, I get out onto our path. If I'm driving the car on the left, I have to leave enough room to allow myself to get out between the two cars. Sometimes that means I have to park right up to the left boundary. In that case, if I have a passenger, I ask them to get out before I reverse into the drive, so that they don't have to walk on the neighbour's grass.

It's not difficult and it sounds like your neighbours could easily do the same.

Straycatstrut · 25/11/2019 13:29

Their drive isn't big enough for two cars. They shouldn't have two cars on it.

If they'd done me a lot if favours I might not mind, but they sound like
entitled knobs tbh.

Do not move your own lights so they have space to stand on your grass!

plightofthealbatross · 25/11/2019 13:29

Having seen the picture now, definitely think a fence would be better ... or big potted plants down the line ... as the placement of your hedge plants are too close to their drive. It will grow over their drive and they will damage it cutting it back, probably on purpose.

SweetMarmalade · 25/11/2019 13:29

Your ndn’s are entitled and cheeky to have asked you to move your lights! I wouldn’t have the nerve to ask!

Stand your ground, although I would do as a pp suggested and maybe look at moving your hedge further in, once it grows I’m sure even if it’s a mm over their side, they will have an issue with it.

IWorkAtTheCheesecakeFactory · 25/11/2019 13:31

I’d fence it too Op.

The fact their dc run across your garden would be all the motivation id need for it.

sunshinesupermum · 25/11/2019 13:36

BrokenWing Best ever drawing! And I agree with you - your neighbour should reverse in - can you put up a wall to stop the greedy fuckers (FIVE cars?!) from encroaching your parking space?

PinkCrayon · 25/11/2019 13:36

From the photo I would say to fence or build a wall op. If they want to be able to put two cars on their drive then they should have widened it enough for two cars. It's so cheeky to expect someone to change their own garden for you to be able to park your car and get out when they should have just widened their drive big enough for two cars in the first place.

Beveren · 25/11/2019 13:38

Couldn't she open the door between the lights, IYSWIM - i.e. shunt slightly backwards or forwards so that the light doesn't stop it opening?

soupforbrains · 25/11/2019 13:41

@BrokenWing I completely agree with your behaviour in your scenario especially the excellent comments and the pettiness of parking as close as possible when 'necessary' Grin

also bonus points and a gold star for such an excellent diagram! Star

DarlingNikita · 25/11/2019 13:42

YANBU. Just say mildly that no, the lights are in your garden and so on your property, so there's no issue.

notangelinajolie · 25/11/2019 13:48

Get rid of the lights. The hedge is key, grow it. The bigger the better, or a the very least too high for stepping over. I'm a great believer in defining borders at the front houses - not only will it make your garden your own, it will improve kerb appeal. And like the best optical illusions, it will make your property appear bigger than your neighbours because it will highlight just how small their drive is, barely big enough for 2 cars.

TheStuffedPenguin · 25/11/2019 13:51

Parking is the number one issue between neighbours and it can be really unpleasant . If you have a shared drive like this then how would you like to have to always get out your car on the side of your hedge ? If they have to use your drive to get out then presumably you have to do the same ?

Oneborneverydecade · 25/11/2019 13:52

Sassenach first thing I would do would be to put some large immovable rocks where they are driving across your grass

LavaMagma · 25/11/2019 13:52

@Andbreatheout The OP says their drive is next to her garden, not her driveway. They are walking/trampling her garden every time they do it. I suspect if the driveways were next to each other it wouldn't be an issue.

OP, put a fence up, then plant some lovely flowers your side.

Melroses · 25/11/2019 13:52

My neighbour had this problem as the drive next door was garage + gate width, and as they had also taken the dividing hedge out they were using my neighbours path and front door area to get round the car.

She built a low wall with railings on her side of the boundary, and block paved her front so she could get her cars on easily.

Totally solved all issues and looked good too.

CoastalWave · 25/11/2019 13:52

Now I've seen the photo...

I would get rid of the lights..and save up to have a decent brick wall built.

It's one thing squeezing two cars on your own driveway and having to step on your own lawn to get out - but if you have to step on someone elses, your driveway isn't big enough.

The lights are somewhat irrelevant. She's clearly using your garden as a path.

SayOohLaLa · 25/11/2019 13:54

Those of you saying move the lights, will you be expecting her to move the hedge plants when they're the same height as the lights?

Remove the lights OP. Replace them with little fence posts with chain link fence. Or a bird bath, trough style, along the edge of your lawn Wink

TuttiCutie · 25/11/2019 13:55

PP are right - that hedge is going to die in future because you've planted it too close to their edge, and to maintain it you're going to have to almost chop it in half vertically to keep it off their land. Those hedges aren't very fast growing either.

We've also suffered neighbours that have used our grass as a way of getting in and out of their car and they drove over it plenty too. They basically turned a patch of our lawn into a muddy mess in winter and a dried out patch of soil with no grass in summer. We planted some lovely laurels, it meant we lost about a metre of our garden but they grow like crazy and they're beautiful, and thick.

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