Courier 30 March 2001 - LETTERS section Page 26

Light right

I would like to clarify the effects of light loss occcasioned by the development of the BT site in York Road.

I have lived for 20 years in a two-storey semi-detached house in York Road, opposite Telphone House car park.

Two of the proposed blocks of three- and four-storey flats would be constructed opposite those of us living in this section of the road, resulting in considerable loss of light during the day and evening.

To which part of the BT site is Andrew McPhillips referring when he says that "daylight will be affected to some extent" and "that no legal right of light would be infringed"?

In a letter dated October 22 1999, loss of light to my property was recognised as causing enough of a problem as to warrant an offer of compensation.

Presumably such compensation would be extended to all of us affected by such buildings, should the appeal succeed.

No doubt Mr McPhillips is aware of the book Rights of Light - The Modern Law by Stephen Bickford-Smith and Andrew Francis.

Katherine Quinnell
York Road, Tunbridge Wells

The book referred to is:


- Stephen Bickford-Smith BA (Oxon), FCIArb
Barrister and Chartered Arbitrator
A Master of the Bench of the Inner Temple
4 Breams Buildings, London
- Andrew Francis MA (Oxon)
Barrister of Lincoln's Inn
11 New Square, London
- Elizabeth de Burgh Sidley BA, FRICS
Chartered Surveyor
Drivers Jonas, London

ISBN 0-85308-487-4

The authors' short description of the book:

Rights of light are a distinctive and complex branch of the law of easements. In any proposed development, it is vital that investigations are made to ensure that owners do not have rights which may prevent building as planned - the alternative is to face the possibility of injunction proceedings or a claim for damages.
It is, therefore, essentail that practitioners have a clear grasp of the legal principles and their practical application when acting for clients claiming or resisting the establishment of such a right.

This new book, the first devoted to the subject for many years, is written by a team of property experts with special interest in rights of lights. It provides a practical and up-to-date explanation of law and practice, including the acquisition and establishment of rights, and proceedings for infringement. Expert commentary on measurement and valuation techniques is supplied by a chartered surveyor. The text is supplemented by relevant legislation.

Essential reading for property and plannign lawyers, surveyors and property developers.

The Telephone House Development - a guide through the Local Press

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