Licensees appealed against the grant of judicial review of decisions granting special removal of old on-licences for premises. The grant had been challenged on the basis that the magistrates had had no jurisdiction to make the award because the premises were unoccupied. The relevant legislation had been repealed by the time the matter reached the House but the parties still sought an answer.
Held: The appeal succeeded. Since the decision might still affect the parties, either as to costs, or as might arise from undertakings given, the appeal was not moot. There was no rule of law or practice to make it wrong for the House to continue with the case, though the House itself had a discretion whether to continue it.
Section 15 had to be looked at purposively. In that context, occupation by the local authority with a view to demolition in pursuance of some public interest, in this case the redevelopment of the area, was sufficient occupation to satisfy s15. The strict interpretation proposed by the objectors would bring haphazard results.
Lord Hoffmann, Lord Scott of Foscote, Lord Rodger of Earlsferry, Lord Walker of Gestingthorpe, Lord Brown of Eaton-under-Heywood
 UKHL 7, Times 20-Feb-2006,  1 WLR 496
England and Wales
Cited – Ainsbury v Millington (Note) HL 1987
There had been a dispute between the parties as to a council house tenancy, but by the time it came before the House, the tenancy had ceased to exist, and the action was academic.
Held: Once the parties have settled their dispute there remains . .
Cited – Sun Life Assurance Co of Canada v Jervis HL 1944
The parties had disputed the terms of an insurance policy. The House considered whether it could hear the case once the dispute had been settled.
Held: There was no remaining dispute for the House to settle. Viscount Simon LC said: ‘My Lords, . .
Appeal from – Bushell and Others, Regina (on the Application Of) v Newcastle Licensing Justices and others CA 25-Jun-2004
The applicant sought special removal of a justices on-licence from former premises to its new premises.
Held: The special removal procedure was limited to circumstances of urgency. The applicant had to show that the circumstances fell within . .
At first instnce – Bushell and Others, Regina (on the Application of) v Newcastle Upon Tyne Licensing Justices and others Admn 15-Mar-2004
Objection was made to the removal of an old on-license by the magistrates.
Held: The justices had had no jurisdiction under section 15 because, at the time the application came before the justices, the premises of Mim’s Bar were not ‘occupied’ . .
Cited – Sirius International Insurance Company (Publ) v FAI General Insurance Limited and others HL 2-Dec-2004
The appellant had taken certain insurance risks on behalf of the respondents, subject to banking indemnities. Disputes arose and were settled under a Tomlin order, which was now itself subject to challenge.
Held: The appeal was allowed. The . .
Cited – Madrassa Anjuman Islamia of Kholwad v Municipal Council of Johan-Nesburg PC 1922
‘The word ‘occupy’ is a word of uncertain meaning. Sometimes it denotes legal possession in the technical sense, . . At other times ‘occupation’ denotes nothing more than physical presence in a place for a substantial period of time, . . Its precise . .
Cited – Associated Cinema Properties Ltd v Hampstead Borough Council 1944
For the purposes of rating, where, in addition to legal possession, ‘use and enjoyment’ of the hereditament is required to establish occupation so as to give rise to liability. . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Licensing, Litigation Practice
Updated: 05 July 2022; Ref: scu.238530