UKTC Archive

RE: displacement of a retaining boundary wall - liability

Subject: RE: displacement of a retaining boundary wall - liability
From: Mark
Date: Jul 11 2019 11:45:48
Dear Jerry

Hopefully the most recent update was! I saw it years ago, but have never 
tried to quote it because it is such obvious nonsense, however, from my own 
dealings with structural engineers there is another issue beyond physical 
pressure with trees above retaining walls and that is weight. We all know 
that photosynthesis was discovered because trees put on weight without taking 
that weight out of the soil, consequently large mature trees can massively 
increase the weight that a retaining structure is being required to support 
to a degree beyond what it was originally designed to do. I do not know how 
close to a retaining structure a tree has to be before the weight it is 
adding to the retained volume becomes a serious issue - that is one for the 
engineers.

Mark

-----Original Message-----
From: uktc-request@xxxxxx.tree-care.info <uktc-request@xxxxxx.tree-care.info> 
On Behalf Of Jerry Ross
Sent: 11 July 2019 12:32
To: UK Tree Care <uktc@xxxxxx.tree-care.info>
Subject: Re: displacement of a retaining boundary wall - liability

All 25m trees to be felled if less that 20m from a retaining wall?
Was that Code of Practice drawn up having taken advice from arboriculturists 
or others with a knowledge of tree root growth and morphology?




On 11/07/2019 12:03, Mark wrote:
I wonder what BS8002:2015 Code of Practice for Retaining Structures has to 
say on the matter. I don't have the new one because I am not made of money 
- but the old one basically said that a tree should not be kept on the top 
side of a retaining wall if it is within its own height. Could be 
significant - particularly as this is a Code of Practice - not a 
recommendation.

Mark

-----Original Message-----
From: uktc-request@xxxxxx.tree-care.info 
<uktc-request@xxxxxx.tree-care.info> On Behalf Of Philip Wilson
Sent: 11 July 2019 09:48
To: UK Tree Care <uktc@xxxxxx.tree-care.info>
Subject: RE: displacement of a retaining boundary wall - liability

A pretty kettle of fish, just as I thought. In case you're wondering my 
client is the lower landowner, who also owns the wall. There's no 
displacement so far as is known, but clearly the client should conserve the 
wall in good condition and be seen to be doing so (which relates to 
vegetation management).
With thanks, Philip


-----Original Message-----
From: uktc-request@xxxxxx.tree-care.info 
[mailto:uktc-request@xxxxxx.tree-care.info] On Behalf Of Jerry Ross
Sent: 11 July 2019 09:35
To: UK Tree Care
Subject: Re: displacement of a retaining boundary wall - liability


On 11/07/2019 08:53, Alastair Durkin wrote:
I would leave that for those qualified to do so to work out and the 
come in to address the tree issues! 😉
You're probably right Alastair, but you're a TO with a legal team at your 
back. As a jobbing consultant one tries to help one's client as best one 
can (assuming they deserve help!)  So if one can advise (with suitable 
caveats about the limits of one's qualifications) that it's not worth 
spending money on a lawyer as they are likely to lose the case anyway, that 
seems fair enough.
And in this case, it's my (admittedly unqualified opinion) that the lower 
landowner is on a hiding to nothing: my understanding is that whoever it is 
that has legal ownership of the wall has the duty of care to maintain it in 
such a condition that the higher land is prevented from collapsing onto the 
lower. So if ownership is clearly with the lower landowner, it is they that 
have the duty to maintain it in a functioning condition.
That function is to withstand the forces imposed by the retained land.
The difference would come if an additional factor (such as a tree, or 
perhaps water from a leaking pipe or a pond) is introduced from above that 
increases those forces...

If your client is the lower landowner, that's the advice I'd give. If it's 
the upper I'd be more cautious, as getting it wrong could have expensive 
consequences (if, for instance, the case is deadlocked, the wall collapses 
and it then turns out that actually the upper owner WAS responsible after 
all...).
But in either case  (especially the latter) I'd give supplementary advice 
to check with a lawyer!.


-----Original Message-----
From: uktc-request@xxxxxx.tree-care.info 
<uktc-request@xxxxxx.tree-care.info> On Behalf Of Philip Wilson
Sent: 11 July 2019 06:22
To: UK Tree Care <uktc@xxxxxx.tree-care.info>
Subject: displacement of a retaining boundary wall - liability

Whatever the ownership of a retaining boundary wall, am I right in 
thinking that the landowner on the upper side must remedy any trespass 
caused by an outward displacement of the wall?

   

But what if the wall is owned by the lower landowner, who has allowed the 
wall to fall into disrepair, without any foreseeable predisposing factor 
(such as a boundary tree on the upper land) increasing the lateral thrust 
on the wall?

   

Philip

   




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The UKTC is supported by Bosky Trees arboricultural consultancy 
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To unsubscribe send mailto:uktc-unsubscribe@xxxxxx.tree-care.info

The UKTC is supported by Bosky Trees arboricultural consultancy
http://www.boskytrees.co.uk/