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Sinkholes - We won't let them give you that sinking feeling

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In this Blog article, Amanda Payne discusses the increasingly more common topic of sinkholes.

In recent times the word ‘sinkhole’ has become something of a more common thought for us property lawyers when dealing with conveyancing transactions.

What is a sinkhole?

A sinkhole is a word to describe any hole in the ground created by underground natural erosion. They can occur perhaps from old mining of coal, clay or chalk and water drainage issues.  Sometimes these sinkholes are created slowly over time and sometimes, frighteningly, they can appear very suddenly. Examples have occurred locally in the East Midlands including areas of Nottingham and Leicestershire. 

The recent three-part Sinkhole documentary which aired in November 2017 on Channel 5 is well worth a watch if you missed it as it goes into detail of how they can occur and shows real life examples, abroad as well as in the UK. To view this programme go to


What have sinkholes got to do with Conveyancing? 

Experts in ground subsidence are saying to Conveyancers that there are risks emerging which can have an adverse nature to issues affecting land and property, which were not previously considered to affect a typical conveyancing transaction.  

Mine entries, mineral planning, Mines and Minerals on title, slope stability and coastal erosion to name just a few, have all experienced a recent change in policy and a significant increase in lender refusals and insurance premium hikes.

How can Fishers Dewes help?

Fishers Dewes  choose the appropriate search as a standard on every property purchased, which covers potential risks of natural ground subsidence, giving our clients a fuller picture of a property they are about to purchase and therefore peace of mind.


If you are thinking about buying or selling a property why not give Amanda and her team a call to get a full quote?

Amanda Payne is a Director and Head of Residential Property at Fishers Dewes Solicitors. Amanda has extensive experience across a broad spectrum of property, land and complex title transactions.