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Row erupts as millionaire erects huge 11ft hay bale wall to shut out furious neighbours


John Turner, 50, and his mother Maxine, 78, live in Thornham, Norfolk, and are locked in a dispute with their neighbour. They say he, Stephen Bett, 68, has put up a hay bale wall to stop him having to look at those living opposite.

After a vandal recently cut down 95 conifer trees, planted four years ago by Mr Bett, who is a former Police and Crime Commissioner, suspicion reportedly fell on Mr John.

Shortly after this, Mr Bett erected hay bale stacks, standing at 11 feet tall.

Mr Turner is furious that this has blocked his and his mother’s view.

Maxine has MS and an eye condition called macular degeneration.

Her main joy is understood to have been looking out over the fields from the house she has lived in for four debates.

Frank, Mr Turner’s father who died of Covid in January 2021, also enjoyed looking out at the field.

On July 12, Mr Turner showed the bales over in frustration.

Norfolk Police were called out but decided no crime had been committed.

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Since this time, Mr Bett has re-erected his hay bale wall, according to reports.

The wall is now understood to be slightly shorter than it was before.

Mr Turner said he will not attempt to push the bales over again.

He said: “I said to Stephen if I’d cut down the trees I would have done it years ago. My dad was stuck in a chair and loved that view – that and the snooker. Three weeks ago the trees were cut down; not all of them, a large selection of them, 95 were cut down in total.

“The police haven’t got anything to go on. The police were called because I pushed over one of the hay bales. I did this because my mum was upset.

“I promised my dad that I’d look after my mother. I can’t push them down again. When she’s upset I’m upset. I don’t think I’ve got the strength.

“I want my mother with what sight she’s got to see the horses running around. She’s pretty much housebound.

“My parents had been here since 1982. Mr Bett moved in 20 years ago. He said he didn’t like my mother’s washing, or the barbecues which we don’t have.”

He added: “She’s losing her vision and has MS, she can’t leave the house really, she loses too much energy. She tends to look out the window to see the horses go past and now all she can see is those bales of hay.

“Within a year her sight has deteriorated, all I wanted was for her to have something to look at before it completely goes.”

Mr Brett has not yet commented.



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