Man’s hefty after neighbours complain about overgrown garden

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A man has this week been slapped with a hefty fine after neighbours complained about the state of his garden. Wigan Council gave Richard Marklew a notice requiring him to carry out work on his house after eighbours in Shevington, Greater Manchester, had concerns about the condition of the property.

He had two months to cut the grass in his front and back gardens, get rid of the ivy on the roof and brickwork, fix or replace the gutters, and clean and paint the porch door and window frames.

Marklew came before borough magistrates earlier this week to plead guilty to failing to comply with the notice after missing the March deadline.

He was given a £700 fine, and with court fees and a victim services surcharge, the total was £1,402.

It comes as legal experts at BPP University Law School revealed six garden laws people could be breaking without realising.

This includes fruit theft, trimming branches, and planting trees.

On fruit theft the experts said: “It may sound strange, but it’s true. If you find fruit in your garden that has fallen from a tree belonging to your neighbour, they have the legal right to ask for it back.

“Not only this, but removing said fruit and keeping it would count as stealing. 

“If you want to avoid this, the best solution is to return the fruit as soon as you find it – and avoid simply throwing it back into their garden.

“If you do this, it could be seen as garden waste fly-tipping or littering.”

Other laws you could be breaking include asking your neighbours to clean up their leaves, taking flowers from neighbours, and taking land disputed into your own hands.

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