Pregnant mum in row with neighbours over six-foot fence blocking access to home

A pregnant mum is in a row with her neighbours after they built a six-foot fence at the bottom of a staircase in their shared garden.

Lorraine Smith says the “obstructive” fence leaves the walkway so narrow that she can’t fit her pushchair through.

The 32-year-old who works as a hairdresser also claims the fence blocks off access for her elderly grandparents, leaving them “in tears”.

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She cares for her 78-year-old grandparents and occasionally stays with them at their Oxgangs, Edinburgh, home but fears the restricted access will prevent her from doing so.

Lorraine, who is eight months pregnant with her first child, says the fence was installed by a new neighbour who has lived at the property for less than a year, reports Metro.

Her frail granddad is now allegedly unable to get down the communal steps to take his dog for a walk.

She said: “They have literally taken up half of the steps with the fence and built their own, which makes no sense.

“As it’s an old coal mine house, the back garden is communal and so are the steps at the back of the property.

“When they moved in last August they were told that it was a communal garden and was split in half so anything that they wanted to build had to be put in a letter to my grandparents.”

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The hairdresser said her grandparents originally agreed to the fence and even contributed £600 for it – but they didn’t realise it would restrict their access.

She continued: “Last Thursday, February 23, I came to the house and saw the joiner building the fence. When the neighbours were planning on building it, they told my grandparents but did not say that it would take up one metre of their land.

“They said they wanted their own privacy and couldn’t understand why it was a communal area anyway. My grandparents said that was fine, but now their access has been completely restricted.

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“When the joiner was building it, I went and knocked on their door but funnily enough nobody was in. Later that night, I knocked again and they told me I was just looking for an argument and that the fence was built so I’d have to deal with it.”

It is understood that if the council is content with the fence being a permitted development then it would not have required planning permission.

A spokesperson for the City of Edinburgh Council said: "We are aware of this incident and are looking into it."


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