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Repeat Players

By Dave

[with apologies to the most cited, and brilliant, socio-legal article: Marc Galanter, “Why the ‘haves’ come out ahead: Speculations on the limits of legal change”]

Mr Justice Beatson dismissed a renewed application for judicial review in R(Husband) v Solihull MBC [2009] EWHC 3673 (Admin).  The claim was pursued on Mr Husband’s behalf by Stephen Cottle, who is described in the transcript by Beatson J as a repeat player.  In Galanter’s classic, it was argued in part that repeat players generally may have the advantage over “one-shotters” partly because they get to know how the trial process works.  Unfortunately for Mr Cottle, the only advantage of his repeat player status was that he retained Beatson J’s clerk’s e-mail address.

The other repeat player is the subject-matter of the application: is the rule in Hammersmith & Fulham LBC v Monk, about which we have written much in the past year or so, compatible with Article 8?  The application was refused on two grounds: first, “it is not, in the state of English law now, arguable that the unqualified right to possession by a landlord is incompatible with Article 8; or indeed, in the light of Sheffield CC v Smart [2002] HLR 34, with Article 1 Protocol 1 of the Convention” (at [8]); second, the claim was not arguable on the facts of the case in which it appeared to the local authority that the property was vacant, and so could not be argued that Solihull had not acted reasonably in acting on the NTQ served by his ex-.

Done and dusted?  I think not.  Rumour has it that Dixon is off to the ECHR; Kay v UK is on the horizon; and then there’s the CA bust-up over gateway b let alone the nine-person SC in Pinnock.  It wouldn’t be surprising if the RCJ is bursting at the seams with appeals and JRs on mandatory possession proceedings.  Maybe 2010 will be the year when we will find out if we are (metaphorically) eating quarter pounders or Royales.


  1. The.Dark.One

    Sorry, I haven’t got a link to or have knowledge of this case. Reading between the lines, was it about one party of a joint tenancy giving NTQ and then the landlord obtaning possession? Any more detail available?

  2. Cait

    and can we have a link to the transcript please?


  3. chief

    @The.Dark.One – You’ve got it about right. What appears to have happened is roughly this:
    H & W had problems. This resulted in a non-molestation order and exclusion order against H. While he was excluded W told Solihull that she wanted to end tenancy and signed NTQ. W then departs the scene. After the tenancy was terminated Solihull visited the property, decided that H had abandoned it and changed the locks. About 3 weeks later H asked to be re-admitted to the property, Solihull refused.

    @Cait – It’s from Casetrack, not sure how to link to that.

  4. dave

    Thanks for that, Chief, and apologies for not setting the facts out in my original note.

  5. Cait

    Ta chief and Stephen :)


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