Great wall of Sydney: Neighbours at war after man builds 19ft fence that blocks everyone’s view because he was bored during lockdown
A homeowner who built a colossal 19ft fence around his back garden because he was ‘bored’ during lockdown has gone to war with his neighbours.
Ali, who lives in the Chester Hill suburb of Sydney, has infuriated other residents who complained to the local council after he blocked off their view in July.
The fence, which is treble the size of a standard garden fence, is dubbed ‘The Great Wall of Chester Hill’ by Ali who says it was a combination of needing more privacy and lockdown-induced ennui.
Ali told A Current Affair: ‘Well, when you’re sitting at home and you’re not allowed to go nowhere and the neighbours are looking at you, you say “you know what? I’m going to build a bloody wall.
‘It was a Covid brain explosion.’
The wall was built in July and surrounds the backyard of the Chester Hill home in Sydney’s west
A frustrated neighbour stares up at the massive fence which now looms over his garden
Ali constructed the wall during lockdown, describing the 5.65metre structure as a result of a ‘Covid brain explosion’ and blamed his ‘d***head neighbours’
Ali said the initial plan was to build something pleasant for his neighbours to look at on the reverse side but changed his mind because of their attitude
Angry locals said the monstrous structure appeared suddenly in July – without any warning from homeowner, Ali.
They claim their subsequent complaints to Ali or the Cumberland Council about the height of the fence have not been responded to.
The fence, according to Ali, who constructed it, stands at 18.53ft tall – triple a standard backyard fence of 6ft.
‘It blocks the sun, we don’t really get sun any more,’ a local resident said.
‘I’m very stressed, I like my flowers and the view, with the trees before it was nice but now it’s very bad.’
Ali said the initial plan was to build something pleasant for his neighbours to look at on the reverse side but changed his mind because of their attitude.
‘I was going to do a nice feature on the other side as well, but when you have d**khead neighbours, then that’s what happens,’ he said.
Neighbours said three large pine trees stood in the place of the wall dividing the yards for years until they were suddenly chopped down a month after Sydney’s lockdown began.
Ali said the trees were dying and needed to be cut down, but photos taken by neighbours show the plants still full of leaves.
A neighbour looks out his back door at the 11-metre wall that is perched over his fence
The wall rises 5.65m into the air, more than three times a normal divider of 1.8metres, casting shadows across the neighbouring yards
Earlier images show the large Christmas trees that were cut down to make way for the wall
Tradesmen then arrived to construct the giant L-shaped wall.
‘They just told us they were building it. When they put the walls up we said it looked big but they ignored us,’ one neighbour said.
‘They chopped down those massive trees, they put it up in one week.’
Witnesses said tradies were working on the wall around the clock during lockdown to erect the ‘hideous’ wall, made from steel posts and frames with spotted pine timber.
Ali said the townhouses looking into his yard made it feel like ‘they were sitting here with me’.
‘A man needs privacy,’ he said.
Large black boards are then installed to complete the wall which is now casting shadows across a number of backyards in Chester Hill
Neighbours watched in horror as a family erected the 19ft fence and cast their backyards into darkness during Sydney’s latest lockdown
The steel and wooden eyesore features a series of LED artworks from Bunnings that light up at night.
‘It’s like going to an art museum. It’s a piece of art at night, I’ll tell you that much,’ he said.
In a statement to Daily Mail Australia, Cumberland Council confirmed it was taking ‘enforcement action’ against Ali.
‘Council has received and acknowledged complaints regarding an alleged unauthorised structure at the subject property,’ it said.
Other angles give perspective of the hideous divider blocking the views of homes surrounding it – a development that was not blocked by local council
Ali described the wall as being like an ‘art museum’ and said he plans to sell it off and ‘crane it out’ should Cumberland Council reject his application
‘These complaints have been investigated and enforcement action has been taken, with specified timeframes provided for compliance.
‘Council has provided updates to the complainants where contact details have been provided.
‘Any complainants who require a update of the action taken may contact Council and further information will be provided.’
Ali put in a belated development application with the council but said he wouldn’t be dismantling the wall should it be rejected.
‘It won’t come down. I’ll sell it, crane it out,’ he said.