Boundary Disputes

St John’s Chambers continues to feature as a leading set for real estate disputes on the Western Circuit. Its barristers act in challenging boundary and easement cases. Sources appreciate that ‘the set has high-quality members who are very easy to get on with and the work is of a high standard.’ “

Chambers UK  2020
Real Estate Litigation

Our Real Estate team have a wealth of experience in advising and representing commercial, agricultural and residential clients in boundary disputes with neighbours and in adverse possession claims.

The system of land registration in England and Wales does not conclusively determine the ownership of land because boundaries shown on registered plans are usually general boundaries only and are subject to alteration/rectification under the Land Registration Act 2002. Conveyances can be ambiguous or inconsistent, and often the position on the ground does not match what the paper title appears to show.

In these circumstances specialist advice and representation is often required to resolve the issue of ownership, and our team can help with this.

Areas of expertise:

  • Interpretation of parcels clauses and maps in conveyances
  • Ownership of walls, fences, verges, banks and hedges including Devon and Cornish hedges
  • Ownership of tidal and non-tidal river banks, lakes and the foreshore
  • Ownership of private tracks and the subsoil under highways maintainable at public expense
  • Application of legal presumptions in relation to fences, highway boundaries, bodies of water, and hedges and ditches
  • Determining claims to adverse possession in relation to unregistered land and registered land under the Land Registration Act 2002 and the transitional provisions

They also advise on party walls, rights of way, rights to light, restrictive covenants, nuisance (e.g. subsidence and withdrawal of support, flooding, tree roots) and other types of disputes arising between neighbours.

We understand our clients’ interests and needs and we aim to provide a cost-effective service that meets them.


As the number of cases being dealt with by way of mediation increases, our mediation team is on hand to help, as advisers, advocates and mediators. Our facilities are specifically designed to meet with clients’ needs for a mediation venue. Read more.

Public Access

Some members of the team are also available to act, where appropriate, for members of the public, as well as commercial and non-commercial organisations, under the Public Access scheme. Read more.


The team delivers workshops and seminars in Chambers and regional centres. We also provide training on behalf of local Law Societies and in conjunction with solicitors’ firms. In addition we can give tailored in-house training for particular firms. If you would like any further information please contact Elizabeth Champion on 0117 923 4714 or email: [email protected].

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