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Councils Vary in High Hedge Application Fees

There is a big difference in the level of fees being charged by councils for processing applications made by residents under the High Hedges (Scotland) Act, the Herald has reported.

The Act came into force on 1st April this year, and was intended to provide a solution to disputes between neighbours over hedges which grow over two metres tall, and block out light.

Under the Act, home owners and occupiers have a right to apply to a local authority for a high hedge notice.

If a high hedge notice is granted but not complied with then the council can enter the property to carry out any necessary remedial work and charge the cost back to the owner of the hedge.

Making such an application under the Act is meant to be a last resort rather than the first port of call, says the Scottish Government, and people are urged to take all reasonable steps to resolve the issue themselves before making their application.

However, a number of applications have been made across Scotland since the Act came into force, and the Herald has discovered wide fluctuations in the charges set by councils. Stirling and Inverclyde Councils apparently have the lowest charge, at £192, whereas Glasgow charges as much as £500.

The Herald suggests that the costs involved might be putting people off making an application in certain areas, as its research found evidence of more applications being made in council areas with the lowest fees.

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