High hedges

The right hedge can be an ideal garden boundary and help to bring in new wildlife to your garden, but the wrong hedge can cause you, or your neighbours, unwanted impacts such as loss of light.

We can assist residents who have concerns about the height of a hedge.

Complaints can be made to us about a high hedge where:

  • The hedge is affecting reasonable enjoyment of your home because it is too tall, and
  • You have made attempts to resolve the situation before making your complaint.

What type of complaints can we deal with?

The hedge should be:

  • grown on land owned by someone else
  • made up of a line of two or more trees or shrubs
  • mostly evergreen or semi-evergreen
  • more than two metres tall
  • capable of obstructing light or views (even though there may be gaps in the foliage or between the shrubs or trees)

Who can complain?

The owner or occupier of the property that is affected by the hedge. If you are a tenant or leaseholder, you should let the owner know what you are doing. The property does not have to be wholly residential, but must include some living accommodation. Otherwise we cannot consider the complaint.

What attempts should be made to resolve the situation before complaining?

We can only accept a complaint as a last resort. You must show that you have tried to resolve the problem with the hedge owner. You should have taken the following steps:

  • made every effort to resolve the situation yourself
  • tried talking to the hedge owner or occupier of the property
  • sent a letter to the hedge owner of the property to try to resolve the problem
  • informed the neighbour of your intention to complain to us

If these requirements have been met, you can make a complaint.

How do I complain?

You will need to provide us with evidence that you have tried to settle the dispute yourself before we will consider your complaint. This is not a free service and an investigation will cost you £320.

If you wish to make a complaint to us you will need to complete an application form and return it to us with the £320 fee. To discuss your complaint and for an application form call 01495 235209 during office hours.

Our role is to act as an impartial third party to adjudicate on whether the hedge is affecting the reasonable enjoyment of the complainant's property.

Further information

High hedges – complaining to the council

Over the garden hedge

Hedge height and light loss

You can also contact Environmental Health who will also be happy to offer any further advice.