We all live in a community. No matter how rural and how far away one’s neighbours are. Often far-flung farms are closely knit whilst urban dwellers may often not know the name of the person next door.
Whether we live in detached houses with wrap around gardens, or dense terraces, or multiple flats, our choices and decisions about what we attach to our walls or install in our gardens affects others around us. My Dad always consulted our neighbours about a new fence going up, a low brick wall, and hedge cutting. Thus the hedge cutting often became a joint effort, with cups of tea. My Dad is my plumbline for neighbour relations.
Where I live now, no respect was given to the boundary which is mine. Instead of erecting a fence on their slide, the neighbours put the fence on the boundary line. On the other side, great respect was shown after my arrival, and the fence was placed inside their boundary.
It seems the etiquette around boundaries is dying out, and I am not old.
So earlier this year, my neighbours hung high pitched windchimes eight feet from our mutual fence. There are other places they could have been hung. I have great problems with high pitched sound, as I have a rare disease in my nervous system. It is so rare that it is not researched. The windchimes cause me pain and muscle tension.
My neighbours, who are tenants claim I harassed them, but in fact I knocked at their door at two different times of day before resorting to posting a note, with my mobile number. They ignored this and then trespassed in my garden. Meanwhile, they were causing nuisance by hooking their back gates open, preventing ease of access for me and my friends, and work men.
Quay Living, their letting agent, doesn’t care about any of this and will not ask my neighbours to move the windchimes. The council has exhausted it’s powers in asking them to move them, and my neighbours refuse mediation.
In the summer, I could hear the chimes all over my house as I had many windows open due to the heat. It’s got so bad that I scream with pain when I step into my garden. I can no longer enjoy my garden.
I have started a petition asking the Secretary of State for the Environment to introduce a law requiring householders to consult their neighbours about noise-making installations,or visual disturbance. Someone I care about has had a flag hung beside her bay window, and it disturbs her constantly and obscures her view.
Please take a couple of minutes to sign this petition. One day it may be you with an intolerable noise or visual disress, or your elderly relative.
Sign the PetitionMake Neighbours consult on what they put in their garden that makes noise/visual distress
Chrissie Morris Brady