The recent case of Waterman -v- Boyle (Feb 2009) illustrates the respective rights of neighbours when it comes to access and parking.
The full case report is extensive, however, the Watermans and the Boyles were neighbours. The Watermans title documents gave them rights over defined and fixed areas and parking rights on two designated spaces.
A situation developed where access and parking became a contentious issue between the parties.
Boyle built a wall entirely on his land but the presence of the wall had the effect of making turning access to the Watermans garage impossible. Boyle also took steps to prevent visitors (unless loading or unloading) from parking on the access areas and stipulated that parking must take place in the designated bays.
The Watermans brought the proceedings to resolve the disputes.
The Court of Appeal held in this instance that parking on the right of way was unreasonable when there were designated spaces and whilst it might be desirable, it was not necessary and no such right to park was available for the Watermans visitors.
The wall erected by Boyle clearly made access to the Watermans garage difficult on the other hand the wall had not been built on an area set aside for access but on the Boyles own land.
On the facts of this case the erection of the wall was held not to be exceptional enough to constitute a substantial interference and Waterman had to use vehicles of a size that could be accommodated by the defined areas available and the right could not be interpreted as being variable to take larger vehicles than those that had been used when the right of way had originally been granted.
The full manuscript of the case makes interesting reading.
If you have difficulty over the use of a right of way shared drive please feel free to Contact Us for a discussion of your problem.