Those of you who follow this blog will know of the trouble we’ve had with some of our neighbours, who have disputed ownership of the back half of the vicarage garden, known as ‘the paddock’. They have broken through the fence time and again, and even barred up the gate from our own garden.

After several lawyers’ letters, visits from the police etc things seemed to have quietened down. The environmental team have spent over a year working on the paddock, clearing it, and we are turning it into a community garden, with raised beds for local people to grow stuff. The same team managed to put a metal gate in place of the wooden one that the neighbours kept breaking open! It’s been ‘all quiet on the western front’ for a few blessed months.

At 1am this morning I was woken by loud banging, and I realised that somebody was having a good old bash at something made of metal. Alarm bells immediately rang in my head and I got out of bed and went to the window, which overlooks the paddock. I could see some dark shapes moving around, and the sound was somebody trying to break open the metal gate.

Last time we had a ‘raid’, the thieves took £500-worth of the fabric which had been pinned down on the ground to prevent weeds growing so fast. This has now all been replaced and it would be awful to have it go again. I woke Hub, and we phoned the police, who were there within 5 minutes.

Of course, by the time they went into the paddock, nothing was happening and nobody was there. The central panel of sheeting had all come loose/been pulled free, but nothing had gone and there was no damage.

I reckon we caught them in mid-steal.

Of course there is nothing to link this to the ‘neighbours’ – but the neighbour owns the land next door which he has gated off and is called a ‘place’. We strongly suspect that illegals are living here, and the neighbour has been in trouble with the law already about using illegals to drive coaches belonging to the family coach hire firm.

Here’s the paddock how it was originally, when we ‘inherited’ it:
paddock previously

Here’s the environmental team working on it; note the new fence at the end, which they have put up:
clearing the paddock

Here’s the new section of fence, which cuts off the corner of our garden, thus giving limited access to the paddock up our drive from the road:
new fencing

You can just see the flat roof of our garage. It had asbestos in it, so that has been removed by a specialist firm, and the garage flattened to clear the access to the community garden.

It’s an exciting project, but now we are going to have to take security more seriously … :**:



  1. Oh I am sorry the neighbour nightmare has kicked off again but hopefully it will not persist. I reckon there is something going on in the constellations just now as lots of upset and upheaval and yesterday I had several people phone in distress as something kicking off and upsetting them…..

    Dear God please let it all calm down quickly 🙂


  2. What on earth did they hope to achieve making a racket like that in the dead of night? Great show of brains on their part. Won’t be long before they’re caught, I shouldn’t think!

    Glad the damage wasn’t so bad. Sounds like a great project.


  3. Even the police dont bother with ctv camara stuff anymore there is too much of it and many vandals wear things making them not easy to reckonise. You poor thing it will be difficult to keep them out if not impossible.xx


    1. Really all we need to do is to establish where they are coming from. If they are coming over the fence from the nuisance neighbours, the police will know where to start!


    1. We have already discussed this option with various people. There are some problems about where to set up the camera, so that it can ‘see’ into the paddock but not be easily put out of action. We’re going to have to look at it again … maybe a light on a sensor, too.


      1. Yes, we can’t put it on one of the trees in the paddock because it would be too easily accessible, and we don’t have any convenient trees on our side of the fence. If we put it on the back wall of the house then it would be too far away. Logistics! But I’m sure there’s a solution.


    1. It’s too big an area, Pauline – you can’t see it all in the photo. The environmental team have been working so hard – it’s not fair on them or on the people who are going to grow stuff! But ‘the neighbour’ is on the police radar, and our community minister has a steely glint in her eye and will take it up with the neighbourhood forum.


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