Right to light issue


#1

Hi, our new next door neighbours have just lodged a planning application for an extension which would block all light to one elevation of our property. They haven’t been in touch with us about it, and in the application, incorrectly stated that there was no window which would be impacted by the application. As they’ve not spoken to us about it in advance of their application, and have mis-stated that our window does not exist on the application, we’re unwilling to approach them informally as it doesn’t look very likely that this would alter their approach. We have lodged a formal objection to their application through Lewisham planning and have sought a site visit from planners.

However, our understanding (given some very specific issues relating to our specific circumstances - there is already light blocking of that window and so the light is all the more precious) is that our best chance of preventing this situation is via an injunction which we have an excellent chance of getting approved.

Does anyone have a recommendation for a local legal firm which undertake this kind of work?


#2

Don’t take the legal route yet.

The Planning process can deal with relatively simple matters, as this may be.

What room does your potentially affected window serve?

Do you have details of the application?


#3

First port of call should be to speak to them and explain the situation from your perspective to see if a compromise can be agreed, I’d think


#4

There are two issues here:

  1. sunlight/daylight impact - this is a planning issue. You could, if you think you will be impacted by the development seek to get them to do a sunlight/daylight assessment as part of the planning application - request from lewisham that this is undertaken prior to determination. This is a technical assessment that follows BRE Guidance. It may be that the proposal would not impact your sunlight/ daylight to your property- so try not to get to worked up - until it’s tested you won’t know - not from a layman point of view with no experience anyway - sorry to be blunt!

  2. Right to Light - this is not a planning issue. It is statutory process to get compensation for loss of light. it falls outside of the planning regime. You will need to instruct a surveyor that specialises in this - not a lawyer.

Hope that helps


#5

There are government papers you can request or possibly download (google) relating to rights to receive light through apertures in your building. I believe it depends on which room is affected, hallways, utility rooms and entrances have less rights than living rooms. www.planningni.gov.uk apologies there is a UK document clicked on wrong version :open_mouth:


#6

It’s our bedroom. We have two windows into it - one north facing bay, part obstructed as it’s a basement flat - and one side facing small window, which currently faces the wall of their garage. There’s limited light through this window, but building an additional storey on top will block almost all of it.

I’m speaking to a surveying company on Monday.


#7

Hmm. I think their first port of call before putting an application in should have been to talk to us! I am not sure what value a discussion would be at this point given the expense they will have already gone to with the application.


#8

PS thanks for the advice given.