Social Welfare Lawyers in the Centre of Birmingham

Dear -v- SSCLG & Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council

Dear -v- Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government and Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council [2015] EWHC 29 (Admin) 19 January 2015

Ms Dear had been refused permission by the Council for a Gypsy site and appealed to the Planning Inspector.  The matter was recovered by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (SSCLG).  The Inspector recommended refusal of both permanent and temporary permission and the SSCLG agreed with his Inspector.  Ms Dear appealed to the High Court.

Canal and River Trust v Geoffrey Douglas Mayers

Canal and River Trust v Geoffrey Douglas Mayers Chester County Court 22 November 2013 HHJ Halbert

The delay in reporting this case is due to the fact that it has only recently been publicised and we thank the National Bargee Travellers Association for bringing this case to the attention of the boating community.

An action for an injunction was taken against Mr Mayers on the basis that he did not have a home mooring and that he was not using his boat “bona fide for navigation”.

Lawal – v – Circle 33 Housing Trust Limited

Lawal – v – Circle 33 Housing Trust Limited [2014] EWCA Civ 1514

By David Watkinson (retired barrister) and Chris Johnson (Travellers Advice Team)

In R (JL) – v – Secretary of State for Defence [2012] EWCA Civ 449, the Court of Appeal upheld the Judge at first instance who had held that a proportionality argument could be raised at the enforcement stage of a possession order (i.e. after it had been made and when a writ or warrant to bailiffs to execute the order had been issued) although only in exceptional cases, otherwise it would be an abuse of the process of the court to do so.  Such a case could be where “there is a fundamental change in the occupants’ personal circumstances after the making of a possession order but before its enforcement” (para 41) or, as in this case, the state of the law at the time of the possession hearing was that the proportionality argument could not be made (para 42).  In the recent Court of Appeal Judgment in Lawal – v – Circle 33 Housing Trust Limited ([2014] EWCA Civ 1514), the Court of Appeal added a case where an Article 8 defence had been advanced before the first instance judge but she “either declined to hear it or peremptorily dismissed it but in either case, she gave no reasons for doing so” (para 90, Sir Terence Etherton LJ). 

To read the Judgment in this case, see: http://www.bailii.org/cgi-bin/markup.cgi?doc=/ew/cases/EWCA/Civ/2014/1514.html&query=Lawal+and+v+and+Circle+and+33&method=boolean

Article 8 After A Possession Order Has Been Made

In R (JL) – v – Secretary of State for Defence [2012] EWCA Civ 449, the Court of Appeal upheld the Judge at first instance who had held that a proportionality argument could be raised at the enforcement stage of a possession order (i.e. after it had been made and when a writ or warrant to bailiffs to execute the order had been issued) although only in exceptional cases, otherwise it would be an abuse of the process of the court to do so.  Such a case could be where “there is a fundamental change in the occupants’ personal circumstances after the making of a possession order but before its enforcement” (para 41) or, as in this case, the state of the law at the time of the possession hearing was that the proportionality argument could not be made (para 42).  In the recent Court of Appeal Judgment in Lawal – v – Circle 33 Housing Trust Limited ([2014] EWCA Civ 1514), the Court of Appeal added a case where an Article 8 defence had been advanced before the first instance judge but she “either declined to hear it or peremptorily dismissed it but in either case, she gave no reasons for doing so” (para 90, Sir Terence Etherton LJ).

To read the Judgment in this case, see: http://www.bailii.org/cgi-bin/markup.cgi?doc=/ew/cases/EWCA/Civ/2014/1514.html&query=Lawal+and+v+and+Circle+and+33&method=boolean

Much Too Exceptional Funding

The Court of Appeal in a case called R (Gudanaviciene and Others) -v- The Director of Legal Aid Casework and The Lord Chancellor has decided that the Lord Chancellor’s Guidance on Exceptional Case Funding (ECF) is unlawful.  The Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act (LASPOA) 2012, section 10 provides for ECF for certain cases that would otherwise be outside scope for Legal Aid in order to avoid, amongst other things, a breach of Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights (the right to a fair hearing).  The Gudanaviciene case involved five Claimants who had immigration cases and who were refused exceptional funding to assist them in the court action they were involved in.

To read full details of this case, click here.

R (Gudanaviciene & Others) -v- The Director of Legal Aid Casework & The Lord Chancellor

R (Gudanaviciene and Others) -v- The Director of Legal Aid Casework and The Lord Chancellor [2014] EWCA Civ 1622, 15 December 2014

The Court of Appeal in this case has decided that the Lord Chancellor’s Guidance on Exceptional Case Funding (ECF) is unlawful.  The Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act (LASPOA) 2012, section 10 provides for ECF for certain cases that would otherwise be outside scope for Legal Aid in order to avoid, amongst other things, a breach of Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights (the right to a fair hearing).  The Gudanaviciene case involved five Claimants who had immigration cases and who were refused exceptional funding to assist them in the court action they were involved in.

Moore & Coates -v- SSCLG

Moore & Coates -v- Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government & London Borough of Bromley and Dartford Borough Council and Equality and Human Rights Commission [2015] EWHC 44 (Admin)

Ms Moore and Ms Coates are Romani Gypsies who were seeking planning permission for single pitch sites for themselves and their families (in Ms Moore’s case from London Borough of Bromley and in Ms Coates’ case from Dartford Borough Council). Ms Moore had previously been refused planning permission by a Planning Inspector but had had that decision quashed by a High Court Judge and that quashing of the decision was upheld by the Court of Appeal (see the Travellers Times blog ‘Gypsy Woman wins in Court of Appeal’ http://travellerstimes.org.uk/Blog–Comment/Gypsy-woman-wins-in-court-of-appeal.aspx.

Following the quashing of the Planning Inspector’s decision, Ms Moore’s case was returned to another Planning Inspector. Ms Coates had applied for planning permission which had been refused by the local planning authority. She had appealed to a Planning Inspector. The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (SSCLG), Mr Pickles, decided to recover their appeal cases to make the decisions himself.

TAT News E-Bulletins 2015

TAT News E-Bulletins 2015

Attachments

Total Attachments: 9

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COURT STATES MR PICKLES DISCRIMINATED AGAINST GYPSIES AND TRAVELLERS

Ms Moore and Ms Coates are Romani Gypsies who were seeking planning permission for single pitch sites for themselves and their families in the Green Belt. The local planning authorities ( London Borough of Bromley in Ms Moore’s case and Dartford Borough Council in Ms Coates’ case) refused them planning permission. They appealed to a Planning Inspector.  The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (SSCLG), Mr Pickles, decided to recover their appeal cases to make the decisions himself because of certain Ministerial Statements that had been issued.  The reason given for these decisions to recover the cases were that the appeals involved “a traveller site in the Green Belt”.