Network Rail Infrastructure Ltd v Williams and Another: CA 3 Jul 2018

Japanese Knotweed escape is nuisance

The defendant appealed against an order as to its liability in private nuisance for the escape of Japanese Knotweed from its land onto the land of the claimant neighbours. No physical damage to properties had yet been shown, but the reduction in value which had occurred.
Held: The decision of the recorder was upheld, but for different reasons: ‘the claimants should . . be able to argue and succeed before us on the ground of an unlawful interference with their enjoyment of the amenity of their properties due to the impairment of their right to use and enjoy those properties. They have not relied upon any evidence that was not before the Recorder, and the characteristics and damaging nature of Japanese knotweed have always been at the very heart of this litigation.’

Sir Terence Etherton MR, Sharp, Leggatt LJJ
[2018] EWCA Civ 1514
Environmental Protection Act 1990
England and Wales
CitedBaten’s Case 1610
. .
CitedFay v Prentice And Another 1845
A declaration in case stated that the defendant, being possessed of a messuage adjoining a garden of the plaintiff, erected a cornice upon his messuage, projecting over the garden, by means whereof rain-water flowed from the cornice into the garden, . .
CitedHarrop v Hirst 1868
The inhabitants of a named district, Tamewater, in the parish of Saddleworth, claimed a right to take water from a spout in the highway The claim was for diverting water.
Held: The right was upheld. An action for diverting water is . .
CitedLemmon v Webb HL 27-Nov-1894
A land-owner was free to lop off boughs from his neighbours trees to the extent that they reached over his land, and he could lop them without going on to the neighbour’s land. He was not required to give notice of his intention to do so. . .
CitedNicholas v Ely Beet Sugar Factory Ltd CA 1936
The plaintiff owned several fisheries and sought damages after the defendant polluted the riner. He was unable to prove any actual loss.
Held: Disturbance of a several fishery was an invasion of a legal right, and in such a case the injury to . .
CitedDavey v Harrow Corporation CA 1957
The Plaintiff’s house was damaged by roots penetrating from trees on adjoining land. At first instance, Sellers J found that the damage was caused by the trees, but they were not proven to be the property of the defendants. On appeal and after . .
CitedCambridge Water Company v Eastern Counties Leather Plc HL 9-Dec-1993
The plaintiffs sought damages and an injunction after the defendant company allowed chlorinated chemicals into the plaintiff’s borehole which made unfit the water the plaintiff itself supplied.
Held: The appeal was allowed. Liability under . .
CitedGoldman v Hargrave PC 13-Jun-1966
(Australia) In Western Australia, a red gum tree was struck by lightning and set on fire. The appellant had the tree cut down, but took no reasonable steps by spraying the fire with water to prevent the fire from spreading, believing that it would . .
CitedHunter and Others v Canary Wharf Ltd HL 25-Apr-1997
The claimant, in a representative action complained that the works involved in the erection of the Canary Wharf tower constituted a nuisance in that the works created substantial clouds of dust and the building blocked her TV signals, so as to limit . .
CitedDelaware Mansions Limited and others v Lord Mayor and Citizens of the City of Westminster HL 25-Oct-2001
The landowner claimed damages for works necessary to remediate damage to his land after encroachment of tree roots onto his property.
Held: The issue had not been properly settled in English law. The problem was to be resolved by applying a . .
CitedRust v Victoria Graving Dock Co and London and St Katharine Dock Co 1887
Damages in nuisance are not to be increased by any subdivision of interests. . .
CitedWest Leigh Colliery Company Limited v Tunnicliffe and Hampson Limited HL 1908
The court considered the issue of surface subsidence as a nuisance owing to the working of minerals under or adjoining his property.
Held: depreciation in the market value of the property attributable to the risk of future subsidence cannot be . .
CitedSedleigh-Denfield v O’Callaghan HL 24-Jun-1940
Occupier Responsible for Nuisance in adopting it
A trespasser laid a drain along a ditch on the defendant’s land. Later the defendants came to use the drain themselves. A grate was misplaced by them so that in a heavy rainstorm, it became clogged with leaves, and water flowed over into the . .
CitedThompson-Schwab v Costaki CA 1956
The sight of prostitutes entering and leaving the defendant’s premises was so offensive as to be actionable in nuisance by a neighbouring owner. . .
CitedLeakey v The National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty CA 31-Jul-1979
Natural causes were responsible for soil collapsing onto neighbouring houses in Bridgwater.
Held: An occupier of land owes a general duty of care to a neighbouring occupier in relation to a hazard occurring on his land, whether such hazard is . .
CitedLaws v Florinplace Ltd 1981
A large shop sign was erected advertising a ‘Sex Centre and Cinema Club’, the premises of which opened a few days later. Signs were put in the shop window, one of which advertised ‘Uncensored adult videos for sale or available’ and others of which . .
CitedBlue Circle Industries Plc v Ministry of Defence CA 16-Jun-1998
Contamination of land by the overflow of radioactive materials from a pond, led to damages for the cost of repair, and also the permanent diminution of the value in the land from physical damage.
Held: The Court dismissed the appeal of the . .
CitedBarr and Others v Biffa Waste Services Ltd CA 19-Mar-2012
The claimants appealed against rejection of their claims for nuisance in the form of smells emanating from the respondent neighbour’s waste processing plant. The defendant relied upon the grant of planning permission.
Held: The cause of action . .
CitedFletcher v Bealey ChD 27-Jan-1885
The court was asked to grant an injunction quia timet. Pearson J said: ‘it is not correct to say, as a strict proposition of law, that, if the plaintiff has not sustained, or cannot prove that he has sustained, substantial damage, this Court will . .
CitedLeeds Industrial Co-operative Society Ltd v Slack HL 1924
The plaintiff complained of a threatened interference with ancient lights.
Held: Damages may be awarded in lieu of an injunction even where the injunction sought is a quia timet injunction, but that power imports a further power to give an . .
CitedGraigola Merthyr Co Ltd v Swansea Corporation (No 2) 1928
The plaintiffs owned two collieries, worked as one. The defendant owned an adjacent reservoir, constructed in pursuance of a special Act, incorporating sections from the Waterworks Clauses Act 1847. Wanting to take their seams under the reservoir, . .
CitedHooper v Rogers CA 1974
When considering a request for a quia timet injunction, Russell LJ said: ‘In different cases, differing phrases have been used in describing circumstances in which mandatory injunctions and quia timet injunctions will be granted. In truth, it seems . .
CitedLloyd v Symonds, Anderson and Lucas CA 20-Mar-1998
Appeal against injunction in nuisance to stop keeping breeding kennels. The neighbour had begun keeping the kennels, and the neighbour complained to the local Environmental Health office. Abatement notices were served, and the neighbour respondent . .
CitedJan De Nul (UK) Ltd v NV Royale Belge ComC 31-Jul-2000
Contractors’ liability insurance – contract for capital dredging of main shipping channel in Southampton Water – deposit of silt outside limits of dredged channel – whether insured negligent – whether silt interfered with navigation – whether . .
CitedJan De Nul (Uk) Limited v NV Royale Belge CA 10-Oct-2001
The contractor undertook to dredge a stretch of river. Due to its failure to investigate properly, the result was the release of substantial volumes of silt into the estuary, to the damage of other river users and frontagers. The act amounted to a . .
CitedBirmingham Development Company Ltd v Tyler CA 24-Jul-2008
Appeal against dismissal of claim for injunction to abate nuisance. . .
CitedLondon Borough of Islington v Elliott and Another CA 1-Feb-2012
The appellant challenged a costs order. It owned property on which grew certain trees. A neighbour complained of the incursion of roots, and began an action. The Council, having removed the trees said that it should not have been ordered to pay the . .
CitedDryden and Others v Johnson Matthey Plc SC 21-Mar-2018
Sensitisation to salt can be personal injury
The claimants, had developed platinum salt sensitisation due to the defendant employer’s breach of health and safety regulations and common law duty, claimed a cause of action for personal injury. Platinum salt sensitisation is, in itself, an . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.


Updated: 10 November 2021; Ref: scu.618935