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Right to park and solicitors legal "explanation"

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Right to park and solicitors legal "explanation"

Postby Horticgirl » Mon Aug 15, 2016 12:56 pm

Reading about solicitors letters to unrepresented opponents in a different thread prompted me to post this.

A month or so ago we received a letter from our neighbours solicitors claiming that they were entitled to park on our drive- over which they have a right of way - to unload, although they have room on their own land. We asked them to provide legal authority for their claim to which their reponse was a little modified but still claiming to be able to use it for larger vehicles which can no longer, because of the development of the property and installation of a large gate,easily get onto the neighbours land. The explanation they gave was nothing more than a few words from a (non legal ) website, no doubt dug up by their client.

At the time the right to pass and repass was reserved there was more than adequate room on the plot which was also un-fenced and so access was relatively easy. There would have been enough room for two large vehicles/ Transit sized vans.
The solicitor must surely know that a court would look at the position on the ground at the time of the grant/reservation.


My question was really what we should say to the solicitor, who seems to be trying to take advantage and get us to agree to further rights?
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Re: Right to park and solicitors legal "explanation"

Postby atticus » Mon Aug 15, 2016 1:03 pm

Interesting one. I will reply later (currently on my phone, not a larger device) unless someone else makes my point in the meantime.
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Re: Right to park and solicitors legal "explanation"

Postby theycantdothat » Mon Aug 15, 2016 1:06 pm

because of the development of the property and installation of a large gate


Whose land has been developed and on whose land is the large gate?
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Re: Right to park and solicitors legal "explanation"

Postby shootist » Mon Aug 15, 2016 1:26 pm

As a general observation on legal snotograms it is worth remembering that solicitors by their very nature can compose letters that are correct but intimidating. This is not said to offend any solicitors here, it's just a fact. and not always an offensive one. If you want a classic example take a look at the letters the TV licensing authority sends out. To many a non legally minded individual they are all but consigning the recipient to prison and are completely misleading about the powers of inspectors, yet I have never found anything in them that is factually inaccurate. And I am certain that each of the many different standard letters sent out were originally drafted by a highly competent lawyer.
"I do not agree with what you say, but I'll defend to the death my right to be offended by it."
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Re: Right to park and solicitors legal "explanation"

Postby miner » Mon Aug 15, 2016 1:30 pm

Horticgirl wrote: ..... entitled to park on our drive- over which they have a right of way - to unload, .....

My question was really what we should say to the solicitor, who seems to be trying to take advantage and get us to agree to further rights?


To my mind, having a "right of way" means what it says: a right of passage (only) and does not imply any right to actually park on the right of way.

Stopping to unload does not in my view amount to parking per se, as parking implies being there for a significant period of time, and not for the sole purpose of loading/unloading.

So what is the issue? Stopping temporarily merely for the express purpose of loading/unloading, or actually parking?

As to a response, I'd be inclined to reply to the solicitors stating that you reject the content of their letter.
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Re: Right to park and solicitors legal "explanation"

Postby Horticgirl » Mon Aug 15, 2016 2:05 pm

theycantdothat wrote:
because of the development of the property and installation of a large gate


Whose land has been developed and on whose land is the large gate?

TCDT, the neighbour, and their predecessors have developed their buildings so as to compromise the outdoor space. The current neighbour has also i stalled a large gate which further impedes access onto his own plot, and has a lot of garden "paraphernalia" still further reducing the available parking.
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Re: Right to park and solicitors legal "explanation"

Postby dls » Mon Aug 15, 2016 3:55 pm

A huge part of this depends upon the origin of and specification of the right of way.

A much bigger art is that it is worth going a long long way out of your way to avoid a dispute with neighbours.
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Re: Right to park and solicitors legal "explanation"

Postby atticus » Mon Aug 15, 2016 5:03 pm

I was going to say this. The terms of the right of way need to be examined. Is it, in effect, a right to get between the other land and a third location (eg a road) via a specified part of your land, i.e. a right to cross your land in getting between the road and the neighbour's land?

One question to consider is whether the actions of the owners of the other land in restricting the size of vehicle that can enter on their land has operated to reduce the scope of the ROW to vehicles that can get on to their land.

What if you were to build similar gates?

But, as dls says, be wary of getting into a big neighbour dispute.
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Re: Right to park and solicitors legal "explanation"

Postby theycantdothat » Mon Aug 15, 2016 7:16 pm

If. as appears to be the case:

· the neighbours had an access they could use;

· the neighbours have carried out works on their own land which has narrowed the access;

· Horticgirl has done nothing on her land which affects the access;

then I do not see how, whatever the terms in which the right of way was granted, the neighbours can possibly argue they now have a right to load and unload on Horticgirl's land.

Appropriate response to solicitors: Are you serious?
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Re: Right to park and solicitors legal "explanation"

Postby atticus » Mon Aug 15, 2016 8:11 pm

The argument being that they have by their actions restricted the right of way to a right to pass and repass with vehicles they can actually get on to their land.
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