Villager 'blocked neighbours' driveways'

A VILLAGER repeatedly blocked his neighbours' access to their homes by parking his car over their driveways, it has been alleged.

Jane Hunt

A VILLAGER repeatedly blocked his neighbours' access to their homes by parking his car over their driveways, it has been alleged.

Despite being made the subject of a court order banning him from obstructing Back Lane in Monks Eleigh, Michael Cornwell continued to block driveways with his Rover car, Ipswich Crown Court was told.

Cornwell, 55, of Back Lane, has denied acting in breach of a restraining order made by magistrates in 2003 by placing his car on private land in the quiet street between February 22 and March 18 this year.

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Simon Spence, prosecuting, said that on a number of occasions Cornwell had completely blocked his neighbour Richard Thomson's driveway and when asked to move the vehicle had replied: “It's a parking place.”

In order to stop Cornwell parking there, Mr Thomson had placed two large pieces of timber across the mouth of his drive and had written his house name on one of them.

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However he later noticed that one of the pieces of wood had been moved to land adjacent to his property.

“Mr Thomson said there were times when it was physically impossible for him to go about his daily business because of the defendant's behaviour,” said Mr Spence.

Another neighbour, Robert Hyland, claimed he arrived home from work on March 25 and saw Cornwell park his car in his driveway.

He had asked him to move the vehicle but Cornwell had allegedly replied “no” and said he had a right to park on Mr Hyland's driveway as it was “amenity land”.

Several days later Mr Hyland had gone to Cornwell's house to ask him to move his car and on that occasion Cornwell had told him he was on the telephone and had moved his car 45 minutes later.

The police were informed about Cornwell's alleged behaviour and during interviews he claimed that as far as he was concerned the restraining order had been lifted.

However, Mr Spence told the court that was not the position and it was accepted by the defence that the restraining order was still in force at the time of the alleged breach.

Mr Spence said that Cornwell told police that “from time to time” he had parked his car across the drive to his neighbours' houses for a couple of minutes at a time.

“That is in stark contrast to what Mr Thomson and Mr Hyland say,” said Mr Spence.

The trial continues today.

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