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High hedges

Hedges that are not well maintained and those which are made up of particularly fast growing species can cause problems by overshadowing and reducing light to neighbouring properties.

The legislation which applies to high nuisance hedges is the 2003 Anti-Social Behaviour Act (Part 8). The aim of this legislation is to involve the Council only after you have tried talking to your neighbour and if necessary tried independent mediation. Complaining to the Council should be seen as alast resort, when all other reasonable efforts to resolve the dispute have been exhausted.

You may be able to ask the Council to take action under this legislation. A fee of £480 is payable for the Council to take action under this legislation.


Our role is to act as an independent and impartial third party

There is no scope in the legislation for the Council to negotiate or mediate between individuals. We will adjudicate on whether the hedge is adversely affecting the reasonable enjoyment of the complainant’s property.

The submission of a complaint does not necessarily mean that we will require:

  • the height of the hedge to be reduced (and in any event we can’t require it to be reduced to less than 2 metres)
  • the hedge to be removed or require works that would result in the death of the hedge

If, after considering the evidence and representations, the Council agrees that the hedge does adversely affect the complainant’s property it can serve a remedial notice specifying what must be done to the hedge and within what period of time.

Should either the hedge owner or the complainant be unhappy with our decision, there is a right of appeal to the Planning Inspectorate.

For more information

Please refer to the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) publications for further advice and guidance on hedges:

Page updated on: 25 June 2019

Planning Duty Desk


Hackney Service Centre
1 Hillman St
E8 1DY


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