Julie Rankine, who has been repeatedly hauled before court over clashes with her neighbours, has put her house on the market
Residents in an upmarket street in the West Midlands are celebrating after a neighbour they say has made their lives a misery put her house on the market for £1million.
Julie Rankine, 56, has repeatedly harassed and abused her neighbours for almost a decade – hitting one with a walking stick and threatening another with an axe.
She has been convicted of three assault charges, one of using threats and breaching a restraining order following a string of violent incidents on her leafy upmarket street.
But now her luxury five-bedroomed gated property in Sutton Coldfield, is now on the market for £995,000, to the delight of neighbours.
Rankine appeared at Birmingham Magistrates’ Court in March 2017 following three occasions when she poked her neighbours with her metal walking stick during a bitter boundary dispute.
She hit resident Caroline Moore in the stomach with a metal walking stick during an argument about building work on their upmarket properties.
Neighbours were upset about the large fence Rankine put around her home (centre left, with reddish roof), loud music and harassment during her years in the property
She also also waved a 3ft axe at her neighbours on the other side during a row about a fence.
The court heard those incidents were ‘just the tip of an iceberg’ of a nine-year campaign of harassment Rankine had waged against her neighbours.
Sentencing her, District Judge Ian Strongman described her as an ‘unpleasant woman’ who caused her neighbours’ life ‘to be hell’.
He said: ‘This was part of an ongoing dispute with your neighbours, which had been distressing them for many years.
‘You have caused your neighbours great distress, and this is your comeuppance.’
Rankine was initially handed a 22-week prison sentence in 2017 for attacking three neighbours; Caroline Moore, Michelle Kavanagh and Brendan Kavanagh. But she suffered a stoke just one day into her sentence and a judge suspended the jail term.
She was later found guilty at Birmingham Crown Court of breaching a restraining order which had forbidden her having any contact with them.
Neighbours filmed her attacking an electrician who came to work on a neighbouring house
The court hearings previously hear how Rankine ran a small business designing tea-related pottery and utensils from the house.
She wanted to run a tea room from the property, but suspicious neighbours feared it was more like a front for a brothel after the application stated that tearoom users were ‘by appointment only’ and would have booked time slots of two and a half hours.
After the house was put on the market this week, one neighbour said: ‘She’s blighted this area for about 10 years now. It has been absolute hell living near her.
‘We are overjoyed she is moving out. I think there will be a lot of people celebrating when she’s finally gone. I just feel for the people who she ends up moving in next to.’
Residents have accused Rankine of sitting on her roof watching them in their gardens, playing loud music, holding late night parties in her outdoor swimming pool and dumping rubbish on their properties.
In 2017, Rankine was found guilty of attacking her neighbours Caroline Moore, Michelle Kavanagh (pictured together) and Brendan Kavanagh.
Another neighbour added: ‘She has tormented us. It’s been hellish. I think there will be a big party when she finally goes.’
The detached house features five bedrooms – one with a balcony, two reception rooms, a cellar playroom, wet room entertaining and games room, self contained annexe, large garden and heated outdoor swimming pool.
Estate agents Quantrills say on RightMove: ‘This is a very impressive double-fronted period family residence, occupying a mature setting in this sought-after and convenient residential location opposite Sutton Park.
‘Most attractive in appearance with classic double fronted elevations, the property stands well back from the road behind a deep foregarden with gated driveway providing extensive parking for up to 12 cars.
‘The spaciously arranged elegantly proportioned family accommodation retains many of its delightful features.’