Hedged about

A Hampshire resident’s argument that his 2m high perimeter fence was permitted development due to the existence of a hedge between the fence and the highway has been kicked to the kerb by an inspector (DCS Number 400-020-431).

Class A, Part 2 of Schedule 2 to the GPDO permits a gate, fence, wall or other means of enclosure up to 1m high constructed adjacent to a highway and in other locations up to 2m high, the inspector recorded. He ruled that the presence of the hedge and the visibility of the fence had limited relevance to whether the fence should be considered to be adjacent to the highway. He reasoned that if the hedge was not in position, and he pointed out that it could be readily removed, the fence would plainly be considered to be adjacent to the highway, appearing to form a perimeter fence to the land. The presence of the hedge did little to change that relationship, he held, mainly altering the view that was available of the fence. He explained that the view available of the fence would be relevant in a planning application to determine its impact on the character and appearance of the area, but it made little difference as to whether it was adjacent to the highway or not.

The inspector declined to issue a certificate of lawfulness, deciding that the council’s decision was well-founded.

Further information on this topic, together with appeal examples, can be found at section 4.3422 of DCP Online.