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Japanese Knotweed and Network Rail
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Posts: 28
Joined: Jul 2012
Post: #1
02-11-2015 03:11 PM

Hi, has anybody had any experience of dealing with Network Rail on Japanese knotweed? I have reported it, and they claim to be spraying it, but the thing keeps growing and spreading. This has been going on for 3 years now, and some years they haven't sprayed it twice as promised. They advised the spraying would ensure it wouldn't spread further, but it has!!! I am at my wits end. I have contacted them so many times, but just seem to stuck in a loop with them. They claim to be spraying, and that there is no further growth. I keep chasing them for photos, or even confirming dates prior to spraying so I can be there to ensure they are spraying in the right place. I live near Honor Oak Park Station. Any guidance you may have would be really appreciated.

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Posts: 1,538
Joined: Apr 2006
Post: #2
02-11-2015 09:15 PM

CAB or a half hour free session with a lawyer.

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Posts: 28
Joined: Jul 2012
Post: #3
03-11-2015 07:02 PM

Thank you, yes I have tried that, the question I was asking is more specific to dealing with Network Rail on this issue. Legally I need to prove negligence which is difficult as they claim to be spraying and I cannot prove they haven't. The only thing that suggests to me that they haven't is that the knotweed continues to spread despite their advice that spraying would stunt the growth. I'm wondering if anybody has had any success in proving negligence? Sorry I should have been more specific in my initial post.

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Posts: 1,538
Joined: Apr 2006
Post: #4
03-11-2015 08:22 PM

Ask the to prove it. A company like NR would have to put in a job requisition for the works to be done.

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Posts: 1,361
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #5
03-11-2015 09:15 PM

Try the legal maxim "Res ipsa loquitur". If they are spraying the knotweed should be under control. It is not. Therefore, they are not spraying.

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Posts: 45
Joined: Jan 2014
Post: #6
04-11-2015 09:31 AM

Has the Japanese Knotweed encroached onto your property/land ?. If not, then there is nothing that you can do because at present there is no legislation that allows anyone to force someone to do anything about Japanese Knotweed on their land. If yes, then you need to initiate civil proceedings regarding its removal & the legal procedures will allow you to ask them for disclosure of all documents.

Have you tried to speak to your buildings insurance company ? speak to them and put them on notice saying there is this problem and that if it became a problem on your land they would be responsible for it and in their interest to speak to Network Rail ?. If it has encroached onto your land and you have buildings insurance, your insurers should be dealing with this ?.

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Posts: 365
Joined: Dec 2005
Post: #7
04-11-2015 11:49 AM

Network Rail is now subject to the Freedom of Information Act so you can make a formal FOI request for the information you want:

The following site might be useful as it lists FOI requests other people have made to NR (and other public organisations) and there might be something specific to Japanese knotweed. If you made your request via this site both your request and NR's response would be public (so potentially useful to other people concerned about JK on NR land) but it would mean your name (and address/locality as you'll need to put them in the request) would be publicly visible, so overall probably better to approach NR directly and in private.

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