British Couple Struggle in Bulgaria Bee Hell
John and Julie Turner are a British couple who moved to a Bulgarian village looking for a quiet life but instead they have been constantly tormented and attacked by swarms of angry bees.
After contacting the local authorities regarding their neighbor's bee farm in the Elhovo village of Boyanovo they have received little attention and have come to the point where they are ready to pack up and leave in the unlikely event that someone agrees to buy their property.
Julie told Novinite.com of the torment that the bees have caused the couple and their elderly Bulgarian neighbors; "It's almost impossible to walk around the garden, hang out washing to dry or even walk to the car without getting pestered or even stung,our dogs have been stung, visitors have been stung, we can't have BBQ's, friends find it too much to be pestered by the bees so we rarely sit in the garden & we no longer use the double gates next to the hives it's just not worth it so they have been blocked up. Imagine the noise when you have almost 80 hives - the 'drone' noise from the bees is very intimidating."
Novinite.com contacted the local authorities regarding the problem and are still waiting for a reply. Julie informs us that she contacted the local Elhovo municipality in July and also the local department of the Agriculture Ministry, but her calls have fallen on deaf ears.
"From the lack of help we have experienced we would next be advised to go to court, but please ask yourselves this honestly if I was British would I even bother spending more money to get this to court if the local Mayor cannot and the local Councils will not help?" Julie continued.
Julie has asked her neighbor to move some of the bee hives elsewhere but he has taken no action and loopholes in local legislation seem to allow him to keep his huge number of bees in the residential area.
"This matter has caused so much stress and made life so unpleasant that we actually asked about selling the house to buy somewhere else- but noone will buy with that huge number of hives so close to the house, so we are stuck" Julie concluded.
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Thanks for all your advice,unfortunately I know for a fact that the daughter in law is a lawyer for the Min' of Agriculture, and it was the lawyer that we approached about solving the matter who said that we didn't have much chance of winning our case! but was still happy to go to court at only 400 lev for his fees!
You are quite right Elhovo is the nearest town to us. I was advised by Henry who originally wrote the story to contact the local authorities and request a 'proverka' he then gave me the telephone number, I tried to do it yesterday only realising that the dreaded bank holidays were here so I'll have to ring again on Wednesday!
The law out here is so very different from in the UK, that we obviously have no option and have to believe what we're told! it gets very frustrating & very stressful !
Thankfully the cooler weather is coming so not so much trouble with the bees, but the big question is now do we persue this through the winter hoping to get it settled before next spring or wait until then so we can take up to minute pictures of just how many hives are next to our house?? I hope your uncle is successful in his case against his neighbour and thanks again for your advice I've copied it down so I have it to use when the time comes :-)
WHO told you you do not have ANY chance of winning?
ARE THESE PEOPLE LAWYERS?
I do not know how much the BG courts charge as I never parctised law in Bulgaria but
probably in the REGIONAL COURT of Elhovo(I did not read all posts...NO time fo such a nonsense but I think you reside in Elhovo,do you?)
you can represent yourself.
The address of the REGIONAL COURT is Pirot Street.2.
Go there and ask the clerk if you can file a complain in this court?
Get someone who speaks Bulgarian with you or a translator.
If the bee-keeper is so stubborn and does NOT take ANY REGARDS of health and life of
you do not have aanother choice but to sue!
AND DO NOT LISTEN THAT BULGARIANS ARE TELLING YOU HIS DAUGHTER IN LAW OR
HIS FATHER IN LAW OR WHO KNOWS WHO IS A LAWYER!
My uncle in varna is also suing his neighbour FOR RIGHT OF WAY.
And please,please,DO NOT BRING THE ISSUE OF BEING FOREIGNER TO THE JUDGE!
Just tell him/her,that THE NUMBER OF BEE-HIVES ON YOUR NEIGHBOUR'S PROPERTY
INCREASED SO SIGNIFFICANTLY,that IT PRESENT A DANGER TO YOUR
HEALTH,WELL- BEING AND EVEN LIFE!
My son almost died 18 years ago as he was beaten by a wasp during his sleap.
We had had to take him to Charlottenburg Policlinic(Freie UniversitГ¤t Berlin) in the
middle of the night.
YOU MAY REPRESENT YOURSELF ..may be a solicitor is not necessery but I shall
recommend as you probably do not speak Bulgarian.
The LAW of TORTS gives you a right to QUIET ENJOYMENT AND PAECEFUL USE OF
YOUR PROPERTY and everybody,who violates these rights,ought to pay PUNITIVE
Oh,PERCY...PEOPLE EVERYWHERE ARE THE SAME!
In our law office we got a client,who wanted to sue his neighbour JUST because he
poored a bucket of rain water on his balcony!
AND THIS IN GERMANY,MY DEAR!
Here,in Berlin if you make music after 10 pm they will file a suit next day!
Some years ago therewas a case,when one neighbour sued another,because she was
burning leaves in her OWN garden.
It seems you filed the suit in the wrong court.
I Civil Court has ONLY jurisdiction for damages and remedies.
It does NOT have the power to STOP your neighbour to extend his business or TO
REMOVE the bee-hives from his property.
ONLY the Administrative Court can iussue such an ORDER and make him to REMOVE the bees.
You must prove that A DANGER FOR YOUR HEALTH AND LIFE is evolving from this
junk-yard,where the bees are located.
In my opinion a CLASS SUIT will have success.
If you can convince ALL residents of the village to sign a petition(Do not tell them you
want to take him to court!) to the Administrative Court(probably a devision of the
District Court),I am sure you could convince the judge,that THOSE BEE-HIVES OUGHT
Especially as you say it is a RESIDENTIAL area and the MOST IMPORTANT you MUST
insist there is A DANGER FOR YOUR WELL-BEING!
I didn't tell Percy to live under a mosquito net, I said to build a pergola outside and to throw a mosquito net around it so there would be no bees bothering them while enjoying their outdoor space. Lots of people enclose their open porches with aluminum bug screens to keep the bugs away. If it works on mosquitoes, why not on bees?
you are MISGUAIDED,my dear,
as you think people here;in the wondeful civilized Europe are more compassionate,neighbourly,friendly,loving,caring,
trusting and whatsoever than in BULGARIA!
My neighbour filed a claim (Many years ago)at the Amtsgericht against another neighbor,because she was
burning leaves in her,OWN garden.
The Environment Orotection department of the BГњRGERAMT made her to pay a fine of DM 1000,.
I had to laugh myself to death about your proposal to Percy to live under a mosquito net.
When I was a child ,my grandfather had also plenty of bee-hives...
we eat ONLY honey,my honey...NEVER SUGAR!
I was tought to be relaxed,when a bee approaches me and not to wave my hands...
this is the mistake,which many people here,in Grunewald,BERLIN do as here are may be
NOT civilized bees but wasps from the forest.
20 hives didnt cause much bother, certainly not enough to make a fuss over, remember as foreigners we do try to fit in and not cause a problem where there does not need to be one, but as time has gone on the number of hives grew and they did start to cause problems & put simply the more we told the keeper that the number of bees was becoming a problem -which he thought was amusing - the more hives he put in the garden! I don't want to take business away I just want him to move 40 or 60 hives that would still leave 20 beehives in the garden which isn't really a problem. He can become the biggest honey producer in BG as long as its not 4 meters from my front door!
Me personally I have NO desire to have bees...I'll get my honey from Kaufland thanks !!
We were advised to go to court for the very reason you said but were told that we'd not got much chance of winning and could end up paying a LOT of money in court costs - especially as the beekeepers daughter in law is a lawyer for the ministry of Agriculture!
We decided to go down what we thought was the common sense road - make him aware just how many people are effected and just how much it is spoiling life for people who live next to his hives,how dangerouse it can be, civil responcibility etc but unfortunately he does not care and the authorities seem even less interested- maybe because we're British I can't honestly say.
The scrap yard has nothing to do with us that was someone else.
Hello Percy,HOW do you want to prevent the expansion of his business?
WHY 20 bee-hives did not disturb you but 30 or 40 shall disturb you?
In order to get an injunctive relief,you ought to convince the judge,that
YOUR RIGHTS OF QUIT ENJOYMENT OF YOUR PROPERTY WERE TANGATED,VIOLATED?
You mist plead,that the increased number of bee-hives is disturbing the peaceful
use of your house.
The same requirements apply for the crap yard owner in case you want to open a
garage in your back yard and take business from him.
Well what can I say?...... after looking at the link I was inspired and I've bought a couple of the 'bats' !!
I seriously doubt if it'll make any difference but we'll have fun trying!
I might start taking names now for the 2010 summer tournament (or if its boring then yawnament!) If nothing else..... as you say we'll get fitter trying ;-)
If anyone else has any brill idea's I'd love to hear them!!