Leeds Group Plc v Leeds City Council

JurisdictionEngland & Wales
JudgeLady Justice Arden
Judgment Date10 March 2011
Neutral Citation[2011] EWCA Civ 313
CourtCourt of Appeal (Civil Division)
Date10 March 2011
Docket NumberCase No: A3/2010/1194 & 1194(A)

[2011] EWCA Civ 313




(His Honour Judge Behrens)

Before: Lady Justice Arden

Lord Justice Sullivan


Lord Justice Tomlinson

Case No: A3/2010/1194 & 1194(A)

Leeds Group Plc
Leeds City Council

Mr George Laurence QC and Ms Jane Evans-Gordon (instructed by DLA Piper UK LLP) appeared on behalf of the Appellant.

Ms Clare Parry appeared on behalf of the respondent.

Lady Justice Arden

Lady Justice Arden:


In this matter, Mr George Laurence QC appears with Ms Jane Evans-Gordon for the appellant, Leeds Group PLC. This is an adjourned hearing of an appeal in which we have already given judgement. When this court gave judgment, it gave permission for this new ground of appeal to be argued separately. In my judgement I said:

"60. The only other matter on which this court needs to rule is an application to amend the grounds of appeal in effect to argue that section 22 (1A) is to be interpreted as not taking away the vested rights of an owner of land in so far as the applicants rely on acts of use under the amendments brought about by s 98 of the 2000 Act s 22(1A) which would be insufficient to give rise to a TVG at common law (irrespective of the length of use). Mr Laurence with our permission made this application in writing after the conclusion of the hearing of this appeal and, while we have received written submissions from both parties, we envisage that both sides would need to amplify their argument orally. It would thus be wrong for us to rule on it at this stage.

61. …Miss Ellis [for the respondent] does not oppose the grant of permission in principle though she asks in effect that permission be on terms that the Respondent is not liable for costs if the ground succeeds. The point is both arguable and an important point of law and by this judgment and with the agreement of Sullivan and Tomlinson LJJ I would give permission for that amendment. However, in view of the lateness of the application, we do so on the grounds as to costs proposed by the Respondent."


At the time of circulating the draft judgment, and indeed the position may have continued at the time of handing down the judgment, the contemplation of the court was that the new point would be argued by both the appellant and the respondent, with the respondent having the protection in costs that was given in the judgment.


However, it has since become clear that the Registration Authority, the respondent, is not prepared to argue the new point, for financial reasons. The respondent does not consider that it is sufficiently in funds to finance representation on this appeal for the purpose of arguing against the new ground of appeal. Mr Laurence suggested that there might be some concern that the Registration Authority would not wish to argue the point because it might imperil their neutrality, but Ms Clare Parry, who has helpfully appeared this morning on behalf of the Registration Authority, has confirmed that if their finances had been covered they would have been prepared to consider appearing on this appeal and arguing the points for the respondent.


On 8 March 2011, the Court informed the appellant by email that the Court's provisional view was that it would not be appropriate for the hearing asked for today to proceed as a substantive hearing without hearing argument on both sides. So this morning's application has, therefore, been concerned with directions as to how this matter should proceed, and we have had very helpful argument from Mr Laurence and Ms Jane Evans-Gordon. The position is that there is also now an application, listed to be heard with the appeal with permission for a further new ground of appeal that section 98(1) of the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 should be interpreted pursuant to the interpretative...

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1 cases
  • Leeds Group Plc v Leeds City Council (No 2)
    • United Kingdom
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 2 December 2011
    ...Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs was prepared to appear at the resumed hearing: see the judgment of Arden LJ [2011] EWCA Civ 313. 4 The Secretary of State applied for permission to be joined as an Interested Party. We granted the application. At the resumed hearin......

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