Keefe v Amor: CA 1965

The Court declined to limit the extent of a right of way 20 feet wide by reference to the bottleneck at its entrance from the road of 4 feet 6 inches, consisting of a pair of gate pillars and a gate of that width. The grant was over the whole 20 feet width of the strip, not merely a 4 feet 6 inch passage down it. Russell LJ suggested that the day after the grant the grantee might compel the demolition of the gateway so as to permit the exercise of the right granted in clear terms the day before. The language of a grant may be such that the topographical circumstances cannot properly be regarded as restricting the scope of the grant according to the language of it.
Russell LJ explained the position: ‘I would remark that it is sometimes thought that the grant of a right of way in respect of every part of a defined area involves the proposition that the grantee can object to anything on any part of the area which would obstruct passage over that part. This is a wrong understanding of the law. Assuming a right of way of a particular quality over an area of land, it will extend to every part of that area, as a matter, at least, of theory. But a right of way is not a right absolutely to restrict user of the area by the owner thereof. The grantee of the right could only object to such activities of the owner of the land, including retention of obstruction, as substantially interfered with the use of the land in such exercise of the defined right as for the time being is reasonably required. (I am, of course, talking now about private rights of way.)’
Russell LJ
[1965] 1 QB 334
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedStanton, Mills; Mills v Blackwell and Blackwell CA 15-Jul-1999
Two strips of land were adjacent but separated by a wall with a gate. The owner of one plot was given broadly phrased rights of way over both strips. He removed part of the wall over the neighbour’s land in order to make full use of the wider strip. . .
CitedMinor v Groves CA 20-Nov-1997
The parties were neighbours, with houses adjacent to a right of way. Slabs had been laid next to the houses forming a raised pavement. The respondents had sought to enclose their area of this raised pavement, building a porch. They now appealed an . .
CitedWest and Another v Sharp CA 12-May-1999
A deed granted a right of way 40 ft wide, but the land owner narrowed the area of land over which the easement was enjoyed. The easement dominant owner did not object for many years.
Held: The deed was clear, and the original extent of the . .
CitedClarke and Another v Corless and Another ChD 8-Jul-2009
The parties disputed whether one could retain for his own benefit land on an estate reserved for an estate road. A trust was claimed under Pallant saying that the parties had made an informal agreement before the property was purchased.
Held: . .
CitedB and Q Plc v Liverpool and Lancashire Properties Ltd ChD 26-Jul-2000
The dominant owner wished to deal with delivery vehicles in a manner where they were left parked awaiting emptying. The servient owner (a lessee) wanted to construct buildings over a large part of the land. The servient owner objected.
Held: . .
CitedDavill v Pull and Another CA 10-Dec-2009
The court was asked to interpret grants of rights of way over land. The claimant intended to increase the use of the right. The servient owners objected. The claimant appealed against refusal of relief.
Held: The appeal succeeded. There was . .
CitedEmmett v Sisson CA 3-Feb-2014
Appeal against judgment in boundary dispute involving a private driveway.
Held: The appeal failed. ‘The respondents are entitled to exercise the ‘relative luxury’ of the ample right to gain both vehicular and pedestrian access to their land . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 21 September 2021; Ref: scu.254436