Neighbours fail in bid to get rid of 'noisy' pond

Blow £4,000 on the attempt

Updated: 
Mr Ebrahimi's pond.

A couple have failed in their attempt to force their neighbour to get rid of his water feature.

Sarah Smith and her husband Simon spent over two years fighting the case and £4,000 on legal costs, with Mrs Smith representing herself. The couple claimed the noise from the filtration system for Soroush Ebrahimi's pond made them permanently want the loo.

"The noise is intolerable and the feature is left on 24 hours a day, even when he goes on holiday," she said. "The noise never goes away and destroys any pleasure we previously enjoyed from our garden."

Mr Ebrahimi moved into his home in Little Baddow, Essex, a few months after the Smiths, but didn't install the filtration system until a couple of years later, when the newly-renovated nineteenth-century pond started to smell.

His lawyer, Nick Ham, told the court that the filtration system was necessary to keep the pond free of algae. He also pointed out that the pond was 25 metres from the Smiths' boundary.

"Mr Ebrahimi has consulted with pond experts about putting plants in his pond to deal with the algae rather than the pipe, but was told that because the pond is surrounded by 30-odd trees, the plants would not get enough sunlight to perform the natural chemical reaction," he said.

"The noise from the pipe was found to be around 40 decibels, which is the same level as a refrigerator or quiet speech; he has done all that has been asked of him at every turn and has rightfully sought legal help to defend his name. The Smiths are simply oversensitive to this issue."

Mr Ebrahimi.

Magistrates threw out the Smiths' case, and ordered them to pay Mr Ebrahimi's costs as well as their own, the Mirror reports.

It's likely that if the Smiths had had legal advice, they'd have been told that they didn't have a case. But they're by no means unusual in attempting to prosecute their neighbours against all the odds.

A couple of months ago, we reported on the case of Andrzej Jonski, who spent two years and £6,500 on a series of appeals against an order to clear up his rubbish-strewn garden.

Around the same time, Carole Anne Green was landed with a £50,000 legal bill over a long-running dispute over a fence - and said she'd need to sell the house to pay it.

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