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Safety concerns over collapsed fence in Thellusson Way, Mill End
A row over a collapsed wooden fence blocking a pavement in Mill End is an accident waiting to happen according to residents.
The stretch of fence along Thellusson Way, which backs on to the William Penn Leisure Centre, collapsed several weeks ago - obstructing the pavement.
Residents contacted Three Rivers District Council believing it would be a straight-forward job to have the broken fence repaired and the foliage behind it cut back.
However, they were told the fence did not belong to the council so they would not be able to repair it.
Residents say they were told the fence could belong to developer Bellway Homes - which built houses in the area many years ago - but a spokesman for the company denied it was their responsibility.
The leisure centre also says the fence has nothing to do with them.
The confusion is causing frustration for residents who warn a much larger section is rotten and could seriously injure a passer-by if it falls.
Elaine Eaglen, 55, who has lived in the road since her house was built 16 years ago, said: "The fence is rotten, that’s why it fell down.
"People cannot walk on the pavement, they have to walk into the road, mothers have to walk into the road with prams to get round it.
"Somebody is going to get killed, it is an accident just waiting to happen but nobody is willing to take responsibility for it.
"Nobody is giving me any answers at the moment."
In a bizarre twist Bellway claimed on Wednesday that after completing the development the ownership of the fence passed to the owners of the nearest property.
If true, this means the fence actually now belongs to Mrs Eaglen herself and would be her responsibility to maintain.
Responding to this suggestion, the Waitrose customer service manager said: "No way, it’s definitely not ours.
"How would somebody who lives in a house on the road have sole responsibility for the fence going all the way down the road.
"Why would I choose to take responsibility for that. I look after the alleyway down the side of my house but why on earth would I want anything to do with the rest of the fence, it doesn’t make sense."
A Three Rivers District Council spokesman said: "We agree that the overhanging fence is an obstruction. Our planning enforcement team are looking into the matter with Bellway."
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