1 Oct 2015

Council to review rules after fence-fort fight

6:37 pm on 1 October 2015

A protracted wrangle over a four-metre-high fence in one of Wellington's more upmarket suburbs has been resolved in the Environment Court in favour of the complainants.

The view towards the Hutt Valley from the Wellington suburb of Roseneath.

Roseneath is known for its spectacular views of Wellington Harbour. Photo: RNZ / Alexander Robertson

Roseneath resident Peter Aitchison said he had spent more than $100,000 in legal fees, objecting to the eyesore blocking his million-dollar harbour views.

Mr Aitchison, who is a retired manufacturing engineer, told Checkpoint his neighbour said the fence was part of a playground fort.

"He called this so-called children's fort a structure and under the city bylaws, that was allowable. No children - I mean, the old house that's down here is a series of flats."

Radio New Zealand has been unable to contact David Walmsley, who owns the house next to Mr Aitchison.

Wellington City Council said the court decision had significant implications for property owners' rights to build on sloping sites where other houses are close by.

It said it would be reviewing its approach to the district plan's rules about access to views and sunlight, with councillors to be briefed next Thursday.

Mr Aitchison said he hoped the fence would come down within weeks.

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