Whose Hedge height?

Hi SF…yet another question from.me…its all happened in this 5 week trip to France , we return to Uk end of the week. SF has helped me lots in this time.
We now have a bit of an issue with our neighbour, our hedge, on 3 sides, borders his garden which is somehow quite a bit lower than ours.
He can be either quite friendly or a bit grumpy, he is an obsessive vegetable grower. Our hedge over 2 years and during the pandemic has grown to 2.5 metres tall, we have cut it to 2 metres but he is saying needs to.be 2 metres from his side???
I am fuming about this…surely not the case? Not our fault his land lower etc. It would take our hedge down really low and I don’t want to see complete clutter etc.
Any views…excuse the pun.

Interesting question… we (the commune) have just been notified that everyone’s hedges should not be over 2m…
and, across the road from my house, there is just such a hedge as yours.
The garden is raised up from road/pavement level… one has to go up a couple of steps to get into it… and there is a very tall hedge which is due to be dealt with.

I’ll ask the question tomorrow, if I can get to see someone at the Mairie…

(thinking about it… my back terrace is 8ft above my neighbour’s garden, which means I wouldn’t be allowed to plant any sort of hedge if your neighbour’s idea is correct…)

Thank yiu Stella. We are not near a road or pavement.

no, I’m using the road/pavement in place of your neighbour’s garden …

Is your hedge planted the correct distance from the boundary, as that can also be an issue if too close?

My gut instinct is that it would be illogical to measure from anywhere other than the ground the hedge is planted in.


Yes…I feel that should be the case too. The hedge was put in about 18yrs ago by a good local landscaping company, so would have thought he got it right. There is a metal mesh fence all around behind it.
Just back from a walk around the village and cemetry (hit by high winds last night!) We spotted sooo many very high hedges between houses and neighbours. Trust us to be homed in on!

Is a quiet word with your mayor in order?

Our roadside hedge is about 1.5 metres high but at least 3 metres higher then the lane beyond which is itself 3 metres above one neighbour’s field. Never had a problem.

A common ‘hedge’ bordering another neighbour is at least 3 metres high, but it really isn’t a hedge but a series of trees/shrubs which have grown together.

When is a hedge not a hedge?

Thanks everyone…think life is pushing us out of France and to somewhere else! Neighbour and his hedgecutting mate came this morning with equipment and a price of €250 to do it and clear…we have paid out so.much on other unexpected things this visit and not expecting this…we said no, €200…he said yes and has started.
My husbands increasing tremors do not alliw himbto do it himself but he has kept it so neatly before.
I could swear and go on about my feelings right now as I look out at them and feel this is just a kind of power thing!
Nothing in comparison to how others in the world are dealing with suffering but just feels invasive!

Oh…well. Thanks SF!

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This has to be a local rule to your town

Tough luck Sally, I dont envy your plight, and I hope it works out and doesn’t spoil your enjoyment of France. Not everyone is like that. :+1:

Message concerning our commune, from my pal at our Mairie…

Hedge-height is from the ground in which the hedge is planted.
Maximum 2 metres.
(rarely enforced in the past, but now there is a crack-down. There’s been a flurry of cutting/hacking etc.)

The hedge should not protrude through the wire barrier (or over the wall/fence) between gardens.
(in fact, on the Owner’s side there should be a space between the greenery and the wire/fence/wall… )

As I say… this has been told to me and applies in our commune… check things out in your own communes.

EDIT: my pal also suggested that any Brits who feel intimidated by a neighbour, should have a quiet word at their Mairie… to check on what is what and how to sort things out.
Now, I know our Mairie is tops and not all are like this… but no-one should feel bullied.

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I’ve heard of this in 47 as well for planted hedges near to property borders. Hedges should be a meter inside your property borders to allow maintenance without having to inconvenience your neighbours.

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Not clear why you agreed to this.

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Thank you Stella…thankyou all. The guy has finished…a damn quick €200 …it hardly makes any difference at all…I hope the neighbour feels a bit daft if he was hoping the 30cms off would help his legumes. Mindbyou any gardne
What a plonker.

Hi Karen…I think we just gave in, we leave on Thursday and don’t want to take bad taste of it home, no unfinished business etc. Won’t list but have had several payouts this trip re house that have never had before…maybe as left empty for so long this time.

The biggie that I may not have mentioned before is the house is now on the market, sad ,fast but necessary decision. Mainly Brexit and finanvial issues but also hubby’s condition.
Had house for 19 years here, we know there will be minimal capital gains but surprised at the Social Levy Tax too now (how ignorrant are we?!) Hope there is a sliding scale on that.
House is under 150k
BUT!! What I am hearing is that we will be taxed AGAIN on it in UK. (Worldwide Gains?) This makes me feel sick!
We don’t own anywhere in Uk…sounding like we may have enough left to.buy a tent…
I went way off the subject here I know!

Around here the can’t be any rules because most are over 2 meters i don’t have a problem with the height of them more when the are growing over the sidewalks so it hinder people and the corners of streets so I have hard problem seeing around the corner

My neighbours hedge grows right up to and through the fence. It’s probably pushing over 2m as well.

I can’t say it bothers me that much, I cut our side when I was over last - technically I think I should have mentioned I was going to do it but they weren’t around and so I got on with the job - they didn’t object last time.

Sally’s position sounds awkward - sad that her OH is not able to tackle the job himself. €200 seems pretty steep TBH.

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I don’t want to raise your hopes, but I had read that non-residents can benefit from the same exemptions as residents with second homes. And as you have had the house for 19 years this can take a big chunk out of charges you will have to pay.

Vous êtes non résident et réalisez une plus-value imposable en France. Elle sera déterminée selon les mêmes modalités que celles applicables aux résidents de France avec notamment la prise en compte d’un abattement pour durée de détention.
Ainsi, pour la détermination du montant imposable à l’impôt sur le revenu, l’abattement pour durée de détention est de :

  • 6 % pour chaque année de détention au-delà de la cinquième et jusqu’à la vingt-et-unième ;
  • 4% au terme de la vingt-deuxième année de détention.

Au total, l’exonération d’impôt sur le revenu est acquise au-delà d’un délai de détention de vingt-deux ans.
S’agissant des prélèvements sociaux, l’abattement pour durée de détention est de :

  • 1,65 % pour chaque année de détention au-delà de la cinquième et jusqu’à la vingt-et-unième ;
  • 1,60% pour la vingt-deuxième année de détention ;
  • 9% pour chaque année au-delà de la vingt-deuxième.

L’exonération des prélèvements sociaux est acquise au-delà d’un délai de détention de trente ans.

Here’s a link to a simulator that I think allows for non-residents…


And this is the HMRC info to work out whether you will have to pay UK tax. I think you may be alright as there is the allowance on £12k to start with, and then a tax treaty with France. But when your house does sell you must tell them within 30 days!

I think that the HMRC section only applies to UK property @JaneJones :thinking: Since @Sally_Vaughan doesn’t own any property in the UK, I’d be very surprised if HMRC were interested, partly because it’s not in the UK but also because it’s the only house she has, but it might be worth ringing them to double check?

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