Are Shared Garden Walls Structures Under The Act?

by The Party Wall Surveyor

Question

Does the definition of a building or structure under Section 6 of the Party Wall Act 1996 include a shared garden wall. We are excavating within 3 metres of the garden wall and several months after the notice was issued and the award made, our neighbour is disputing it’s validity stating that the section of the Act on excavations (section 6) does not apply to a garden wall. The purpose of his dispute is to avoid some shared costs following an investigation into the subsequent stability of the wall….which was proven to be unchanged following excavation works.

Answer

It is not specifically stated in the Act but it is generally accepted by surveyors (when interpreting the Act) that the term ‘Party Structure’ (as used in section 6) includes party fence walls i.e. shared garden walls.