Overgrown gardens, in most instances, do not cause or constitute a public health nuisance or Environmental Health issue and, although they look unsightly, there are usually no factors which we could act upon.

Homeowners are asked to make sure that the condition of their gardens does not provide potential harbourage for the type of pests that cause a nuisance in law, such as rats. If the garden provides actual or potential harbourage and/or food sources to vermin, the Environmental Protection Team may be able to assist.  The Council has a duty to keep the district free from rats and mice, and this includes taking action against the owner or occupier of a premises where vermin have the potential to nest or find food.

If you have rats or mice on your property, even if you believe that the nuisance comes from elsewhere, you can call our pest control service. If you choose to use our pest control service, the pest control officer will try to establish the source of the nuisance.

If the pest controller confirms that, in their professional opinion, substantial numbers of rats or mice are living in your neighbour's overgrown garden then we will take action. This may involve formal action to ensure that vegetation is cleared or structural works undertaken as well as baiting.

Occasional sightings of rats are common almost anywhere and we will only actively investigate a complaint of an overgrown garden if there is clear evidence of infestation.

Vegetation from your neighbour's garden is encroaching into your garden

You can cut off vegetation that encroaches into your property up to the boundary line.

You should try to talk with your neighbour first to discuss any issues and try to find a suitable resolution before cutting back vegetation.

In many cases the problem can be resolved by talking to your neighbour.

It may be that they are having difficulty coping with the garden and would appreciate some support, for example from charities or local volunteer groups.