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  1. Thank you all for the thoughts and advice. The insurance cover includes legal, but apparently this is to defend any action against policyholder. If the wall collapses, and is deemed mine, any cover will be reduced because it was not maintained!! Regarding which came first, our deeds are only for the plot of land, shows the boundaries but no details of the building. The plot shows proposed road widening which may mean that nothing had been done, but stops development closer to the road for 4 houses. In 1937 the pavement may not have been much more than dirt, judging by some old photographs of the area. The council are clear that they did not build, and will not adopt, the wall as it was probably built for the benefit of the development. All boundary walls and fences are deemed to be the responsibility of both ourselves and adjacent landowners. I have asked the council what the building regulations for constructing a wall to support the highway were in 1937 and, as the wall did not meet the specs (engineer confidant that the amount of rotation clearly shows it was inadequate), what they suggest as it should have been inspected and passed as suitable. The engineer is suggesting gabions 1M square across the 8M, this will reduce my useable land, by more than a metre which is in front of windows. But may be the way to go as it does nor require deep excavation which may find cables and pipes with all that that entails. Have re-attached the proposal. Retaining Wall Strengthening Proposals.pdf
  2. Back in the 1930's highways widened the pavement to 19ft. My semi was built in 1937/38, the property is below pavement level with a retaining wall of approx 2m to the foundation. The wall is approximately 8M long, generally in the order of 0.23m thick above ground level. Its thickness below ground level is not known. There is a brick counterfort built (at a later date) against the rear face of the retaining wall behind the centre-left pillar and alongside an earlier (and possibly original) approximately 0.23m square brick pier shown below. The footing to the retaining wall is approximately 0.1m thick concrete; the underside of which is approximately 0.8m below ground level at the rear of the wall and with a projection from the rear face of the wall of approximately 0.065m. Extracts of the reports conclusion from my consulting engineer says: We are of the opinion that the wall has rotated due to inadequate foundations – the toe at the rear of the wall being of insufficient projection, resulting in excessive pressure on the underlying ground under the constant pressure from the retained earth, and greatly exacerbated by periodic vehicle-related surcharge loading on the footway. Rotation and bowing of the wall has also caused the formation to the footway to drop and the consequent repairs to the surfacing have most likely compounded the issue. The effects of root action – in terms of mechanical damage and also very likely moisture variations in the predominantly clay subsoil due to water demand of the Linden/Lyme tree - are also considered to be a significant contributory factor to deterioration and movement of the brickwork. So... the council refuse point blank to have anything to do with the wall, despite it supporting the pavement as it was probably constructed to provide benefit to the landowner!!! My quandary is what to erect to stop the wall collapsing? Losing a metre of land to place gabions is not ideal, but may be the most cost effective solution. This is the proposal from the engineers, which suggests it may be beyond my skills to erect. Anyone with any thoughts? Retaining Wall Report.pdf Retaining Wall Report.pdf
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