Bovingdon residents have joined forces to fight a land claim after Hemel Hempstead Lord of the Manor, Nicholas Halsey, said he has ancient rights attached to his title.
Villagers in Green Lane, Chipperfield Road and the High Street could be charged by Lord Halsey for the right of access to their front doors, making it difficult to sell their homes.
Letters have been sent to more than 200 residents, informing them of Lord Halsey's plans to officially register his rights with the Land Registry.
He has given residents a three-week deadline to file any objections to the claims over strips of land across residents' front gardens.
A working group has been set up to represent the residents and begin legal procedures to safeguard the land.
For residents' reactions, see Friday's Watford Observer.