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England and Wales Court of Appeal (Civil Division) Decisions
You are here: BAILII >> Databases >> England and Wales Court of Appeal (Civil Division) Decisions >> London Borough of Hackney v Campbell & Anor  EWCA Civ 613 (28 April 2005)
Cite as:  EWCA Civ 613
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IN THE COURT OF APPEAL (CIVIL DIVISION)
ON APPEAL FROM SHOREDITCH COUNTY COURT
(HIS HONOUR JUDGE COTRAN)
B e f o r e :
LADY JUSTICE ARDEN
|THE MAYOR AND BURGESSES OF THE LONDON BOROUGH OF HACKNEY||Claimant/Appellant|
|(1) BURLEY CAMPBELL|
|(2) LAWRENCE CAMPBELL||Defendants/Respondents|
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The Respondent (MR LAWRENCE CAMPBELL) appeared in person assisted by his McKenzie friend, MR REED
Crown Copyright ©
"Do you accept that the real big issues are their claim for possession and your counterclaim basically on the right to buy - not yours but your mother's?
MR CAMPBELL: My mum's, right.
JUDGE COTRAN: And the others are peripheral matters. You accept that?
MR CAMPBELL: Yes, your Honour."
"He then gives his defence to the notice to quit and he basically asks for a mandatory injunction by way of counterclaim. He says in the counterclaim that this delay is ongoing about the right to buy and it has been going on for seven years. He says that the property is not fit for human habitation and is in serious disrepair. He says that he wants the presiding judge to grant a mandatory injunction unless they comply with their obligations under the right to buy legislation. He complains of disrepair and no central heating for many years. He says that he has a spinal injury and he is on benefits. He has been harassed. He wants the claimant not only to recognise and complete the right to buy, but also reimbursement for rent he had paid and he wants damages for that. He has a defence of interference with subsisting contract issues. He repeats the matters about Mr Bulpinder Singh and the heating and the dampness in the premises. He says that he has another claim for nuisance and harassment against the London Borough of Hackney, and he has, finally, a claim raising human rights issues."
"24. I now come to the counterclaim. As I have said, several matters were raised, but the most important two are the question of disrepair and the question of the right to buy. The question of disrepair as to the heating I need not deal with, but of course disrepair is relevant to the question of right to buy because it goes with it. The price was given at that time and it was reduced to £12,000."
I need not read further.
"On the issue of costs, Mr Palfrey submits that, whereas he would be prepared to consider the costs incurred by Mrs Campbell in relation to the proceedings (that is her costs as a private litigant), Mr Lawrence, who had no case, he says, should pay his costs. I thoroughly disagree. I think that Mr Lawrence had a case all along. I think if one looks at the conduct of this case, Hackney - I need not go into the details, but the way that they have dealt with this matter (two different departments not knowing what the other is doing) was, to say the least, not the way that a responsible borough should behave in the light of all the letters written to all the people high up, and in the light of all that bring proceedings for abandonment and then switching course to something else. For those reasons I would award the costs of Mrs Burley Campbell and Mr Lawrence Campbell as both private litigants in these proceedings and these will go to a detailed assessment to a district judge."
"If the court decides to make an order about costs-
(a) the general rule is that the unsuccessful party will be ordered to pay the costs of a successful party; but
(b) the court may make a different order."
So the basic rule is that costs follow the event. The successful party will be entitled to his costs.
"We are in no position to express a view as to whether we would have made the same order as Neuberger J did in Harrison v Bloom Camillin. However, we would emphasise that the Civil Procedure Rules requires that an order which allows or disallows costs by reference to certain issues should be made only if other forms of order cannot be made which significantly reflect the justice of the case: see rule 44.3(7), above. In our view there are good reasons for this rule. An order which allows or disallows costs of certain issues creates difficulties at the stage of the assessment of costs because the costs judge will have to master the issue in detail to understand what costs were properly incurred in dealing with it and then analyse the work done by the receiving party's legal advisers to determine whether or not it was attributable to the issue the costs of which had been disallowed. All this adds to the costs of assessment and to the amount of time absorbed in dealing with costs on this basis. The costs incurred on assessment may thus be disproportionate to the benefit gained. In all the circumstances, contrary to what might be thought to be the case, a 'percentage' order under, rule 44.3(6)(a), made by the judge who heard the application will often produce a fairer result than an 'issues based' order under rule 44.3(6)(f). Moreover such an order is consistent with the overriding objective of the Civil Procedure Rules."
Order: Appeal allowed. No costs on defence or counterclaim. No costs of appeal.