Bell and others v General Accident Fire and Life Assurance Corporation Ltd: CA 11 Dec 1997

The court was asked: ‘whether a company which has granted a lease of business premises in circumstances which would ordinarily mean that the provisions of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 (‘the Act’) applied can invoke s. 24 A of that Act even though it did not have title to the premises the subject of the lease at the time of the demise. Put rather more widely, the question is whether a tenant by estoppel of business premises can invoke the protection of the Act.’
Mummery LJ said: ‘the juristic basis and the legal effect of the estoppel doctrine were authoritatively expounded in the Court of Exchequer by Martin B in Cuthbertson v Irving . . in terms applicable to this case . . The result is also consistent with the legal effect of the satellite doctrine of ‘feeding the estoppel’ . . which applies when an interest in the land is acquired by the person deficient in title at the time of the grant from which the estoppel arose: ‘so that, as Hale put it, ‘by purchase of the land, that is turned into a lease in interest, which before was purely an estoppel”: see Holdsworth’s History of English Law, vol VII, p 246.’


Beldam, Hutchison, Mummery LJJ


[1997] EWCA Civ 2962, [1997] EG 174, [1998] 1 EGLR 69, [1998] 17 EG 144, [1998] L and TR 1




Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 24A


England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedScott v Southern Pacific Mortgages Ltd and Others SC 22-Oct-2014
The appellant challenged a sale and rent back transaction. He said that the proposed purchaser had misrepresented the transaction to them. The Court was asked s whether the home owners had interests whose priority was protected by virtue of section . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Landlord and Tenant, Estoppel

Updated: 13 November 2022; Ref: scu.143361