Enjoying outdoor shared space

It’s that time of year again – barbeques are blazing, tans are being topped up and ice-cream trucks are out in full force. There are loads of reasons for you to enjoy the great outdoors this summer, but it’s important to make sure that your enjoyment isn’t to the detriment of everyone else’s.

Here’s a list of dos and don’ts to consider when you’re outside in a shared space:


  • have barbeques – the heat will damage the grass, the charcoal will leave soot everywhere, and the smoke will invade others’ property.  If you want to have a barbeque, make sure you’re on private property.
  • fill the space with laundry – it’s not your personal laundrette.  As with barbeques, you can only hang your washing out in private areas.
  • play ball games – the communal areas are intended for a more ‘laid-back’ style of recreation.  Plus, no-one wants a football crashing through their window.  If you want a kick-about, head to your nearest park.
  • make excessive noise – it’s not a festival venue, so try to keep your music in your headphones and any other noise-causing activities to a minimum. Otherwise, you risk the neighbours filing a noise complaint.
  • pick the flowers – look, touch, but don’t take! The flowers are there for everyone’s enjoyment, so leave them where they are.
  • walk on the shrubs and flowerbeds – you risk trampling the undergrowth, leaving an unsightly mess and potentially replanting costs.
  • put up bouncy castles or other large play items – large inflatables cause significant damage to the grass, take up a lot of space and generate noise pollution from their pumps.  They also create issues with liability in the event of an injury.
  • Play on the estate roads – this puts both children and motorists at risk of harm.


  • use the space – it’s not just there to look at!
  • be aware that you can be observed – you’re in a public space, likely with other properties overlooking it, so don’t do anything you wouldn’t want everyone in your neighbourhood seeing!
  • clean up after your pets – your pet and anything it produces is your responsibility.  Make sure you dispose of any mess, or risk the wrath of your neighbours (and a hefty fine).

The golden rule with all of the above is be considerate.  Treat the space and your neighbours as you would want to be treated.