Fife Council to ask Holyrood to review hedge laws

Fife Council is set to make a formal approach to the Scottish Parliament and ask for a review of the High Hedges (Scotland) Act 2013, which sets out a process for resolving disputes over high hedges.

Councillors are concerned that the £385 cost of making a complaint is a barrier to householders who would otherwise want to pursue action against their neighbours.

The legislation empowers local authorities to issue High Hedge Notices to owners, specifying work which must be carried out.

Fife Council has processed 14 applications under the law over the past year.

65 appeals were lodged in total across Scotland.

Cllr David Dempsey told the council’s executive committee: “I realise the legislation has been set down and we are stuck with it but high hedges are a form of anti-social behaviour.

“If someone has a noise complaint or planning application row, we don’t expect to charge them £385 to make a complaint. There’s something not right in all this.”

After other councillors shared similar concerns, council leader Cllr David Ross confirmed that the council would ask the Scottish Parliament to review the charges.

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