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The famous five

By J

News reaches us here at NL towers about five gateway B cases that are due to be heard shortly. Apparently some or all of the authorities (Manchester, Birmingham, Hounslow, Leeds and Salford), together with the government, were trying to get the cases adjourned pending the decision of the Supreme Court in Manchester CC v Pinnock. Yesterday, the CA refused this application. Does anyone know anything more about this?

Posted in: Uncategorized
J is a barrister. He considers housing law to be the single greatest kind of law known to humankind and finds it very odd that so few people share this view.


  1. NL

    The not quite famous five? The hitherto unknown five?

  2. J

    The soon-to-be famous five didn’t work as well though…

  3. Cameron

    If only there had been another two authories involved you could have had the more appropriate Blytonion (I think I’ve just invented that word) title of Secret Seven.

  4. simply wondered

    slightly at a tangent, (but as we are being silly it seemed fair enough) in court the other day, the usher called out “nearlylegal[name changed to protect the innocent] v persons unknown” then glared at the hapless party in front of him and demanded “are you persons unknown???”. the party remained silent, so i will never know…

  5. cavw

    there is probably a statute providing that you are presumed to be includided in the term ‘persons unknown’ if you keep silent in those else would you confirm that you wish to remain unknown? this defence is sometimes known as gateway x …

  6. Chris J

    Many years ago on one of our cases in Nottingham County Court, the court desk put out the following message over the tannoy: “Can persons unknown please come immediately to court one”

  7. AF

    I represent Mr Mushin (Non-secure case) and Mr Hall (Intro case). Waller LJ refused B/ham CC’s app to stay pending Pinnock on the basis that the SC should be permitted to consider Art 8 / Public Law arguments in a broader context. Hope this helps. AF

    • NL

      Certainly does, thank you.

  8. dave

    I gather they are going ahead on 15/16 March, listed for a day.

  9. Ben Taylor

    I act for Mr Mullen against Salford City Council who has now been joined as the Fifth Appeal.

    Listed for 5 days starting 15th March.

    Mine is a Gateway B (and A) intro case.

    Hope this helps.

    Ben Taylor

  10. J

    But is there any prospect of getting these 5 joined to Pinnock? Isn’t Pinnock listed for June?

  11. Ben Taylor

    The 5 have to be heard by the Court of Appeal first before they can go up to join Pinnock. One step at a time!

  12. J

    But that is what I’m getting at – there is no prospect of these 5 getting joined to Pinnock is there?

  13. S

    I can’t see how they can unless Pinnock is postponed till the Autumn. How are they going to fit all six in?

    I personally don’t understand why this stay wasn’t granted. Let the SC sort the issue out once and for all and then deal with the other five afterwards.

    If the SC say McCann was right all along then the Court of Appeal simply remits the five back to the county court. If the SC says Kay was right all along then the Court of Appeal simply dismiss the appeals.

    Am I missing something?

  14. The.Dark.One

    To AF and Ben Taylor

    Are you able to give any details about the cases?

  15. NL

    From the Garden Court bulletin today

    Birmingham CC v Frisby
    Court of Appeal
    The council sought a possession order against the defendant, an introductory tenant. A question arose as to whether the tenant could assert in the county court that he had a ‘public law’ defence to the possession proceedings. The council applied to the Court of Appeal to stand the case out of its list on the grounds that the whole issue of public law defences to possession claims would be reviewed by the Supreme Court in Manchester CC v Pinnock (a demoted tenancy case) which is listed to be heard in July 2010 before nine justices of that court. The application was refused. The hearing would proceed in the week commencing 15 March 2010 together with the hearing of four other appeals: two raising a similar issue in relation to introductory tenants (Leeds CC v Hall and Salford CC v Mullen) and two relating to non-secure tenants (Manchester CC v Mushin and Hounslow LBC v Powell).


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