Hart v Spencer (2017) Injunction Romford County Court for failure to comply with the Party wall Act before HHJ Davies
In October 2016 Mr Spencer commenced excavation works within 3m of Mrs Hart’s property. Mr Spencer despite being a self-professed developer had not served any notices under s.6(1) of the Party Wall Act and was asked to stop. He declined to do so.
He then caused minor damage to Mrs Hart’s boundary wall and was again requested to stop and threatened with an injunction. He refused, continued causing the collapse of a boundary wall falling onto Mrs Hart’s property. Mr spencer was threatened with an injunction and his solicitors gave an undertaking not to do any further works until the party wall procedures were in place.
There then followed a period of inactivity until April 2017 when Mr Spencer appointed a surveyor from Cheshire for a project being undertaken in Loughton, Essex. Mrs Hart having previously appointed Mr Antino to deal with party wall matters.
Discussions/negotiations were under way when on the 9th June Mr Spencer decided to commence piling works for his project. Overall there was approximately 200 plus piles to be excavated, but he chose to do the 17 or so within 3m and 6m of Mrs Hart’s property and structures therein.
This was contrary to an undertaking being given previously in 2016 not to do any notifiable works until an Award was in place. On the 9th June Mr Antino was instructed to carry out an urgent inspection to record the on going activities in preparation of an injunction. Mr Spencer became extremely aggressive threatening and was subsequently arrested and received a police caution for causing criminal damage to Mr Antino’s video and photographic equipment plus ordered to pay compensation for the damage caused. Mr Spencer was served with a notice of injunction hearing on the 12th June 2017.
Undeterred by this situation, Mr Spencer then on the morning of the 12th June continued with the piles.
Mr Spencer did not attend Romford County Court despite being notified of the hearing, and having sealed up all of the letter boxes on site. Mr Antino was instructed to attend late on the 12th June to photograph any further activities that were notifiable following the injunction being served at approximately 4.00pm. The injunction remains in place until September.