Right of Way & Rights to Light

Rights of way and rights to light are two of the most common issues that can lead to property disputes, yet finding the right solution can be challenging, requiring the balancing of various interests and a deep understanding of the relevant legal principles.

If you have a concern over a right of way on your property or your right to light, or are involved in a dispute with another property owner over these issues, getting specialist legal advice is usually the only way to achieve a positive outcome.

Housing and Property Law Partnership (HPLP) offers a high level of specialist expertise in all areas of property law, with this being the sole focus of our firm. We can quickly and accurately assess your legal position and talk you through your options in plain English. That way, you will quickly know what action you can take and make an informed decision over how you want to proceed.

We recognise how frustrating and stressful these kinds of property issues can be, so we will aim to make things easier by focusing on good communication and Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) wherever possible. This approach means we can usually find a fair solution that protects your interests without the need for unnecessary conflict.

If you need expert advice on a right of way or right to light, please contact Mark Eaton.


A private right of way allows someone to pass and re-pass by foot and/or in a vehicle across land owned by someone else. It is a form of legal right known as an easement. Easements can be created by express grant in a deed of grant, a conveyance or transfer. The express grant of an easement over registered land has to be completed by registration of the right at the Land Registry. An easement can also be created through long use (known as prescription).

Disputes over rights of way can arise where someone blocks the right of way, seeks to change the route or where it is claimed that the use is excessive or not in accordance with the right. If a right of way is being interfered with, it is important to consider whether or not the interference is substantial as this will have to be proven for a successful claim.


Generally, a right to light is the right to receive light over another person's land to particular windows in a building. It is the right to receive sufficient natural light through windows to allow a building to be used for its ordinary purpose. The right is enjoyed by the land rather than through any particular window. Broadly, a claim will arise if the result of the obstruction is that it will leave less than 50 percent of the affected room adequately lit.

Rights to light are increasingly being claimed by property owners seeking to obtain compensation from developers intending to develop the neighbouring land.

Restrictive covenants can be imposed on land by a seller to prevent a buyer from using it in a way which the seller considers harmful to his or her retained land. Issues that arise in dealing with restrictive covenants include enforcement, who has the benefit and burden, and modification of the covenant to allow a development to proceed.


As a boutique law firm specialising exclusively in property law, we have strong expertise in even the most niche legal matters relating to property.

With decades of experience across our team, we can offer seasoned advice on the best way to deal with issues connected to rights of way and right to light. Over the years, we have learned what works and how to resolve even the most challenging disputes smoothly and cost-effectively while getting the right result for you.

If you are involved in a dispute with a neighbour over a right of way or your right to light, we can offer strong expertise in property dispute resolution. Our team are highly skilled in Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) so can often resolve these disputes out of court. However, we also have strong court expertise, meaning we can provide the best possible representation where more robust action is required.


For experienced, expert advice on rights of way or a right to light, please contact Mark Eaton.