Leigh v Taylor: HL 6 Feb 2002

Valuable tapestries had been set up for display in a room in a stately home . They were first stretched over canvas and then tacked to the canvas. That canvas was then stretched over strips of wood and nailed to those strips of wood which in turn were nailed to the walls of the drawing room. The tapestries could be removed without doing any structural damage to the building.
Held: Despite the degree of attachment to the walls of the house, having regard to the nature of the items and the purpose of their being placed as they were, the tapestries did not become fixtures. The new rule rfelected a change ‘in our habits and mode of life.’
Lord Halsbury LC: ‘Another principle appears to be equally clear, namely, that where it is something which, although it may be attached in some form or another (I will say a word in a moment about the degree of attachment) to the walls of the house, yet, having regard to the nature of the thing itself, and the purpose of its being placed there, is not intended to form part of the realty, but is only a mode of enjoyment of the thing while the person is temporarily there, and is there for the purpose of his or her enjoyment, then it is removable and goes to the executor’.


Lord Macnaghten, Lord Halsbury LC


[1902] AC 157, [1902] UKHL 1




England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedElitestone Ltd v Morris and Another HL 1-May-1997
The plaintiff acquired land on which 27 chalets were erected. They served notice to quit so that the site could be developed. The defendants argued that they had residential tenancies with protection under the Rent Act 1977.
Held: The tenants’ . .
CitedBotham and others v TSB Bank Plc CA 30-Jul-1996
A flat had been repossessed by the bank. The parties disputed whether items were fixtures and charged with the land or not.
Held: The judge had correctly analysed and applied the law of fixtures and fittings. The appeal failed save to a . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.


Updated: 08 June 2022; Ref: scu.190001