Attorney-General ex relater Sutcliffe and Others v Calderdale Borough Council: CA 1982

The court discussed whether a terrace of cottages was within the curtilage of an old factory which was a listed building. At first instance, Skinner J had held that they were, and that permission could not be granted for their demolition. The Council appealed.
Held: The appeal failed.
Stephenson LJ said: ‘The terrace has not been taken out of the curtilage by the changes which have taken place, and remain so closely related physically or geographically to the mill as to constitute with it a single unit and to be comprised within its curtilage in the sense that those words are used in this subsection.’
and ‘Three factors have to be taken into account in deciding whether a structure (or object) is within the curtilage of a listed building . . whatever may be the strict conveyancing interpretation of the ancient and somewhat obscure word ‘curtilage’. They are (1) the physical ‘layout’ of the listed building and the structure, (2) their ownership, past and present, (3) their use or function, past and present. Where they are in common ownership and one is used in connection with the other, there is little difficulty in putting a structure near a building or even some distance from it into its curtilage.’
Changes in ownership and changes in use of the cottages in more recent times had not taken the cottages out of the curtilage of the mill.


Stephenson, Ackner LJJ and Sir Sebag Shaw


(1982) 46 P and CR 399


Town and Country Planning Act 1971 54(9)


England and Wales


ApprovedMethuen-Campbell v Walters CA 1978
The curtilage of a house is narrowly confined to the area surrounding it and did not extend to a paddock. Buckley LJ said: ‘In my judgment, for one corporeal hereditament to fall within the curtilage of another, the former must be so intimately . .

Cited by:

CitedLowe v First Secretary of State and Another Admn 6-Feb-2003
The landowner appealed against an enforcement notice issued with respect to a chain link fence erected along the driveway of his grade II listed building. He said the drive was not part of the curtilage of the building.
Held: The inspector had . .
CitedSkerritts of Nottingham Limited v Secretary of State for Environment, Transport and Regions, Harrow London Borough Council Admn 22-Mar-1999
The curtilage of a building is a small area around it. An assessment of whether a separate structure was within the curtilage which did not consider the distance between the various buildings must be incorrect in that it had omitted an essential . .
CitedSecretary of State for Environment, Transport and Regions and Another v Skerritts of Nottingham Ltd CA 25-Feb-2000
The meaning of ‘curtilage’ whilst not strictly a term of art had caused considerable difficulties. There was nothing inherent in the concept to imply any limitation that the area should be small. In this case the curtilage of a manor house could . .
CitedGeorge Wimpey UK Ltd, Regina (on the Application of) v First Secretary of State and Another Admn 22-Sep-2004
. .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Planning, Land

Updated: 28 July 2022; Ref: scu.195572