His Crowning Stupidity

, , , , | Legal | January 28, 2019

(I work for a small business that does horse trails through an area of public forest that is technically “Crown Land” — i.e. belongs to the Queen by default — and has some conservation rules. We have been having difficulty with a man owning a neighbouring property who wants to use the crown land as his own. He has gone as far as shooting at our rides from a distance, and police have been involved several times at this stage. After a long day of work, in which we dismantled some obstacles he left on the land, he pulls up at our worksite to yell out of his car. It is just me, a teenage girl, and my boss, a short, middle-aged lady.)

Neighbour: “You cut my fences!”

Boss: “No, we haven’t. We don’t go on your property.”

Neighbour: “You cut the fence by the river!”

Boss: “The river isn’t on your land. It’s crown land. It’s illegal to fence off public land for your own use.”

Neighbour: *now shouting* “I own up to the river edge—“

Boss: “No, you don’t. Your property line is 30m from the river.”

Neighbour: “I have permission from the owner to use it!”

Boss: “No, you don’t. Crown land has no owner.”

Me: *mostly to myself* “Well, it does have an owner.”

Boss: “What?”

Me: “The Queen?”

Boss: “Oh, my God.” *to the neighbour* “Are you trying to say the Queen was like, ‘Oh, sure, no problem’? How dumb are you?” *loudly, to me* “Hang on while I call the police.”

(The neighbour left immediately. We continued to destroy every fence he built illegally to block our rides.)

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