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Access to neighbouring land

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A landowner may be liable for trespass if he or she ventures onto his or her neighbours land without permission or a contractual or statutory right.

A landowner wanting to build or repair a wall on or near the boundary, or to build special foundations to strengthen an existing structure, may wish to rely on the Party Wall Act 1996, even when the neighbour happily grants access to his land. An Award made by a surveyor under the 1996 Act gives statutory rights to both parties, which will become valuable if a dispute arises about the work or any damage caused. Following an Award the landowner can enter onto even a reluctant neighbours land on 14 days notice, exclusively to carry out the works described in the Award. In return, the Award may require the landowner to pay compensation to the neighbour for any unnecessary inconvenience caused.

If the works constitute basic preservation to the property (such as repairing buildings and looping trees) rather than party wall works and consent is not given voluntarily, the landowner can apply to court under the Access to Neighbouring Land Act 1992 for an order granting access to a neighbours land. The order will prescribe the terms of access.

Under both Acts, if the building owner does something in excess or what is permitted by the Award or Order they will be treated as a trespasser and the neighbour will be entitled to sue for damages.


Marshall's undertake a full range of residential property surveys.

We cover Oxfordshire and West Berkshire, along with adjoining areas of Hampshire, Buckinghamshire, Gloucestershire and The Cotswolds.

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Marshalls Chartered Surveyors are RICS Registered Valuers highly experienced in the local property market.

We undertake residential valuation instructions for all purposes, including shared ownership and Help to Buy.

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Marshalls were established in 1979 and have in depth local knowledge and experience of all types of building.

We might not be the cheapest, but you can be confident that we are the experts in our field.

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In addition to residential surveys and valuations, Marshalls offer a full range of commercial services, including commercial surveys, schedules of condition and dilapidations advice on behalf of both landlords and tenants.

Note: we do not undertake commercial valuations.

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Party wall

Marshalls offer a full range of specialist Party Wall services, working for both building owners and adjoining owners.

If you have received party wall notices from your neighbour or you are planning to carry out works, we can advise you of your options.

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Lease extensions

A lease is a wasting asset and as the remaining term becomes shorter, a residential property may be difficult to sell or mortgage.

You may need to consider a lease extension or possibly a freehold purchase.

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Property advice

A range of pages offering useful advice on various survey, valuation and general property matters.

From asbestos and bats through to toxic mould and woodworm, we hope this general property advice is useful.

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Contact us

Marshalls have offices in Oxford (01865-863020) and Newbury (01635-529777).

We cover Oxfordshire and West Berkshire, along with adjoining areas of Hampshire, Buckinghamshire, Gloucestershire and The Cotswolds.

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