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‘Network Rail trees caused cracks in my house’ says Stamford Hill man

PUBLISHED: 14:53 06 January 2017 | UPDATED: 17:04 06 January 2017

One of the cracks which has developed in Mr Daines' home

One of the cracks which has developed in Mr Daines' home

Archant

A man is embroiled in a row with Network Rail after claiming trees at Stoke Newington station have caused huge cracks in the walls of his house.

One of the cracks which has developed in Mr Daines' homeOne of the cracks which has developed in Mr Daines' home

Father-of-four Gary Daines returned from holiday last summer to find 15 cracks inside and outside his home in Belfast Road, Stamford Hill.

He suspected they were caused by the trees at the rear of his property and contacted Network Rail – who told him to prove it with an arboriculture report.

They said if he produced the evidence required they would remove the trees and reimburse him the cost of the report.

So he did. A report from OCA Ltd recommended poplar and ash trees are felled because their roots could be taking moisture from the clay ground under the house, making its foundations move downwards.

One of the cracks which has developed in Mr Daines' homeOne of the cracks which has developed in Mr Daines' home

But despite doing what he was asked, Gary said Network Rail has “not been very cooperative” and has put the matter in the hands of lawyers.

Gary told the Gazette: “The evidence was sent to Network Rail at the start of November, and here we are at the beginning of January and we have not received any useful response.

“They have not acknowledged that it is their trees that are causing the damage, despite the evidence, nor have they said they do not agree that it is their trees causing the problem, which would at least give us an opportunity to present further evidence - although what we have sent is pretty water tight.

“As you can imagine it was stressful in itself to find the cracks. We got a fright when we came home from holiday that’s for sure. My wife was pregnant at the time.

One of the cracks which has developed in Mr Daines' homeOne of the cracks which has developed in Mr Daines' home

“But as this has gone on unresolved, the stress has continued, and we’ve also got a new baby who we can’t make a nursery for, or renovate the house to make it baby friendly.”

A spokesman for Network Rail said: “I’m afraid as this is subject to a legal claim we are not in a position to be able to discuss or comment in any detail but please be assured that Mr Daine’s claim is being handled as swiftly as possible.”


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