I'm new to the site so hope I'm on the right forum for this type of question.
I'm working on a legal case and wonder if anyone can help. During a Limited Special Review in 1970 in England the parish council trying to get the status of a way changed from a Rupp to a Boat filled out a standard questionnaire. On this questionnaire they stated that the recorded definitive width of a way has been incorrectly recorded on the original map and statement as an average of 4 feet and should have been recorded as a minimum of 6 feet. The County Surveyor then went out and reported that the Rupp in question was suitable for re classification to a Boat. The definitive map and statement were changed to show this as a Boat however the width was not altered and to this day shows a stated width of an average of 4 feet. The Byway has boundary features along its entire length and at its narrowest is at least 6 feet (probably closer to 7 feet ). At its widest its about 16 feet. In the opinion of any Surveyors here who are familiar with this review should the width also have been changed on the definitive statement at this time to show the correct width in line with the Parish Councils comments. Also were surveyors at this time issued guidance as to what the minimum width should have been for a Boat under this review . Any knowledge would be extremely helpful and if any members can point me towards the guidance from this time or even show it that would be extremely helpfull.
obstructions have been placed outside of a property boundary wall that now narrows the byway to about 9 feet from12 feet. The council are saying this can't be an obstruction as there is over 4 feet of room still available and that any attempt to have the obstructions removed would be defended as a " Serious dispute " and give the magistrates court no option but to not enforce an order for removal. I'm arguing that had the map been updated as is the statutory duty of the council. A minimum of 6 feet would of course include a width of 12 feet.
Thank you in anticipation.
Probably best to just hire a surveyor. Though it is possible that surveyors at that time would have been provided with guidance on the minimum width required for a way to be reclassified from a Rupp to a Boat under the review you're taking a stab in the dark here. You may wish to consult historical records or seek the advice of a legal expert familiar with the relevant laws and regulations to determine if this is the case.
Regarding the current situation with the obstructions narrowing the byway, it is possible that the council's argument about there being over 4 feet of room still available could be challenged based on the fact that the map was not updated to reflect the correct width of the Boat. If the actual minimum width required for a Boat is indeed 6 feet, then the presence of the obstruction could be considered an obstruction to rights of way. Again, consulting a legal expert may be helpful in determining the best course of action. Good luck to you.