Flytipping on Private Roads

Flytipping on Private Roads

19:49 PM, 6th April 2017, About 7 years ago 7

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I have a residential property on a private lane and my tenant is constantly complaining about the fly tipping and other undesirable activities.

Mine is the only residence on the lane – there are garages on the road and some commercial premises that back onto the lane, and these all have rights of access.

Putting a gate on the lane to prevent people driving down there and dumping stuff would be the obvious solution (we’ve tried CCTV cameras, lights etc) but can we force those with rights of access to contribute to the cost?

Or does the freeholder have to pay for it alone?

There is no management contract or service charge currently for the upkeep of the road.

Any advice appreciated


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Graham Bowcock

8:45 AM, 7th April 2017, About 7 years ago

Dear Sarah

Firstly you need to establish if there is any documentation relating to the road. If there isn't then you probably have a simple right of access over it. Your rights of enforcement are limited provided your right is not limited in some way.

It may be that those sharing the rights may be prepared to contribute if they think it will tidy things up and they will benefit. It some don't join in you may have to share costs disproportionately.

If there is a legal agreement this will set out who is entitled to use the road and will, hopefully, include maintenance obligations.

Be aware that you cannot unilaterally gate the access or block other legitimate users.


Sarah Quinlan

11:01 AM, 7th April 2017, About 7 years ago

Thanks for your response Graham. Unfortunately there is no legal agreement but my deeds clearly show right of access. So you're saying that as long as we have access it doesn't matter what condition the lane is in or who else uses it, legitimately or not? I'm the only one with a residential property on the lane and frankly the value of the property would be enhanced by having a bit more security and cleanliness around it so ultimately if I paid for gates it wouldn't be the end of the world. But then how do we know who should be given keys? If anyone has a similar situation where multiple parties need access to a road (eg for refuse collection, parking, pedestrian access to the commercial properties etc) I'd be interested to hear what system you use.

Paul Green

12:17 PM, 7th April 2017, About 7 years ago

You would also have to consider having acces for firebrige and other emergency services, image a fire starts at your residential property and the gate was locked, No fire acces or a tenant had a heart attack, no ambulance could reach them, or a burglary and 999 was called for the police...NO ACCESS.

Shopping precincts have bollards that the emergency services can lower...

Not helpful, but something else for you to consider...

Lastly if a garage caught fire it could of been prevented spreading to the rest of the property's if fire services were not shut out... if you put up a gate for instance...

Good luck...

P.S why don't the council prosecute if you have cctv and registration vehicle number plates of offenders, is it because it's a private road..

What about signage? Just a thought "fly tippers will be prosecuted......

Sarah Quinlan

12:41 PM, 7th April 2017, About 7 years ago

Cheers Paul, yes lots of issues to consider, it's not easy which is why I was hoping another landlord might've gone through it all before! You're right, the council aren't interested as it's a private road. And the police have seen it all before. We have plenty of signage and it's ignored as I guess they know it hasn't been enforced before. We might be able to pay for a private security Co to patrol the lane and issue tickets for non permitted parking by issuing parking permits to some of the commercial units, but that raises a whole load of issues too.

Graham Bowcock

12:57 PM, 7th April 2017, About 7 years ago

Dear Sarah

You will not have a legal obligation to maintain emergency access, although you do need to be practical about it, especially with shared usage. Plenty of houses and properties are behind secure gates.

You'd be best talking to the other users, assuming you can't find the owner, and see if they will agree to share costs.

I have a shared road at my house which runs to a yard and a number of garages. Only two of us use our garages (and the road) so we share the costs equally 50/50. If the others use their garages we would expect them to contribute to the costs.


Robert M

17:27 PM, 7th April 2017, About 7 years ago

Why not check the Land Registry entry, (and your Deeds?) to find out who is the owner of the land (private road), and then speak to them about the problem of fly-tippers and what can be done to prevent this. See if the owner would be willing to gate the road, or install some other form of access control. If the owner of the land is not co-operative, then seek legal advice about your remedies, (presumably the owner has to ensure you can exercise your right of access, so if the road is blocked with rubbish then the owner must get it cleared).

Sarah Quinlan

17:57 PM, 7th April 2017, About 7 years ago

Hi there
That's useful to know about our legal obligation Graham, although as a practical matter, as you say, the situation is a bit different. The owner is around but to call him inactive would be an understatement. So, to summarise, you're saying that we can't force any of the parties with rights of access to contribute to the costs of the gate, and we can't block their access if they don't pay? Some of the users are happy to pay and some are not as they've never had to before and/or they don't use it much.
This discussion has been very helpful in airing some of the issues so thanks to all.


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