High hedges
Produced in partnership with Martha Grekos of Martha Grekos Consultancy Limited
High hedges

The following Planning practice note produced in partnership with Martha Grekos of Martha Grekos Consultancy Limited provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • High hedges
  • Complaints that local authorities can consider
  • Definition of high hedge
  • Domestic property
  • Reasonable enjoyment
  • Planning conditions
  • Dealing with complaints
  • Negotiation
  • Formal complaint
  • Gathering and assessing evidence
  • More...

Complaints that local authorities can consider

Local authorities can only consider a complaint if:

  1. it relates to a ‘high hedge’ as defined in the Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2003 (ABA 2003)

  2. the hedge is on land owned by someone other than the complainant

  3. it affects a domestic property

  4. the complaint is made on the grounds that the height of the hedge adversely affects the reasonable enjoyment of the domestic property in question, and

  5. it is brought by the owner or occupier of that property

Definition of high hedge

The hedge in question must:

  1. consist wholly or predominantly of a line of two or more evergreen or semi-evergreen shrubs or trees

  2. be more than two metres in height, and

  3. act as a barrier to light or access

DCLG has published guidance to help assess whether high hedges block too much daylight and sunlight to adjoining properties and hedge heights to alleviate these problems.

Domestic property

A 'domestic property' is a dwelling or any associated garden or yard. Therefore, a complaint cannot be brought if the hedge affects a garage, barn, greenhouse, shed or other outbuilding used for purposes other than as living accommodation.

Reasonable enjoyment

For a hedge to affect the ‘reasonable enjoyment’ of a property, it must relate to the complainant’s physical property, ie the complainant’s house or garden. The following should not normally be considered:

  1. the effect of the hedge or the

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