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Non-existent drainage ditch


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Sorry everyone - hope I can explain this clearly.
We have a wall of an old stone building that has collapsed. OK - it happens.
But I've been doing some checking.   The ground where the wall is situated has always been very boggy and swampy during and after heavy periods of rain, has always taken ages to dry out.  I've noticed water running down from the fields, down the road and over the grass where this wall had been.
Checking and doing a bit more detective work I have realised that we don't have any kind of drainage ditch at the front of our house.
We're in rural, farming countryside, on a minor country road.  We live on a slope, on the side of a hill.   The road running in front of our house from the top of the hill to the bottom has a drainage ditch running the whole distance, but only on the other side of the road to our house.
On our side of the road there is a drainage ditch which runs from the top of the hill - and then stops - no ditch where our property starts - just a green grassy area, which runs for about 70 feet.  Then there is our 12 ft wide gravel drive entrance.  Then the drainage ditch starts the other side of the drive,  (in front of our land) and continues on down to the bottom of the hill.
In effect, there's a complete drain run on the side of the road opposite our house.
On our side of the road - there is an interuppted drainage ditch....................
It seems that the ditch that should be continuous on our side of the road is not; it was either covered up at some stage, or the work was never carried out.   Which means that all the water draining from the hill on our side of the road, runs down the drainage ditch - stops when it reaches our land - and then spreads out which is why some of our garden, and the front lawn, is so boggy.

Question - this drain line should be on public land - not our private property.   Am I right in thinking that, apart from the driveway, there should be a gap between the edge of the road, then a drainage ditch - which is the responsibility of the commune; and that the land on the other side of the drainage ditch is private property.

In other words - if the ditch isn't there - can I ask the Mairie to get the ditch sorted out, installed, whatever.  Isn't it the responsibility of the local commune to install, repair, maintain these ditches ?   I rather think it was all this soggy ground that may have led to the leaning and eventual collapse of a stone wall.

As I understand it this grassy area which runs along the front of our house has never been fenced - there's no sign of a ditch (which is odd) and the plans don't seem to show a great detail as to the front boundary.

To repair this wall is obviously going to cost;  it's one of the walls of the former old stone house of which there are (or had been) 3 complete walls standing; it's a large part of one of the existing 3 walls that has collapsed.   If there is no drainage ditch then that's something that will need sorting, which could cost us more money.
Feeling fed-up; feeling easiest would be to just knock the whole damn ruin down completely .....
But don't really want to.
Called life 'n stuff - but if anyone has any guidance would really appreciate it - as I always do when I'm asking my stupid questions.
(Couldn't sleep last night; have had 4 cups of coffee since 4 am...- read the on-line newspapers - will probably need a nap this afternoon !)  Sorry to ramble - it's the 'no sleep that's done it.

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Is it possible that the bit with no ditch has been piped at some point for whatever reason and that the pipe has become blocked over the years? They use 12 inch pipe round here by the look of it and are forever clearing them.

I would start with the locals, your neighbours then the mairie if it is small and near as they usually know the state of things. And whoever is your local member of the conseil communale.
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You could be describing our house, chessie. The back wall of the original barn was well on it's way to dissolving, as the local 'stone' is soluble in water :-)

In our case, there's not even a partial ditch on our side of the chemin, so we created a 'V' shaped, shallow gutter that runs the length of the chemin but still allows access to the drive. It was a compromise, as the heavy-duty solution is to dig a trench (ditch) and bury 'buses', big concrete drainage pipes wherever vehicular access is required. The gutter is sufficient to direct the excess water past the house and into the big land drain we put in, that takes all the excess water from storm drains constructed around the house. That drain crosses the grassed chemin to join up with the main ditch on the other side, and on down to the reservoir at the bottom of the slope. I very much doubt that the commune will carry the expense of such works on behalf of an individual house-owner, but you could ask!

If not, best get a quote from your local BTP (Batiment et Travaux Publiques) chap.
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Do you have any bornes at the front as your boundary?

They may have been grown over, but worth it trying to see if they are there.

Also, in future if something happens along these lines, I would consider contacting your home insurance immediately. If they say it is nothing to do with them, they will soon let you know.

And contacting the DDE is a very good idea, they should have very clear plans too.

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