Norwich Union Life Insurance v British Railways Board: 1987

The court made reference to the ‘torrential style of drafting which has been traditional for many years’ among draftsmen of covenants in leases. ‘The use of ordinary language to convey meaning often involves subtle discriminations which for most people are intuitive rather than capable of lucid explanation. An explanation of why ordinary English words in a particular context convey a given meaning is frequently more likely to confuse than to enlighten. Perhaps this is what judges mean when they say that questions of construction are often matters of impression.’


Hoffmann J


[1987] 2 EGLR 137


England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedGLN (Copenhagen) Southern Ltd v Tunbridge Wells Borough Council CA 27-Aug-2004
Neighbouring plots included covenants to use and not to use the land as cinemas. A proposed development would have used the land which had to be so used as an access for the new cinema proposed. The claimant sought to rely upon the Act to enforce a . .
CitedOceanic Village Ltd v United Attractions Ltd, Shirayama ChD 9-Dec-1999
The tenant sought an injunction against its neighbour and landlord to prevent it letting an adjoining property without a restriction similar to the one in its own lease. The claimants sought reassurance from the defendant tenants of the adjoining . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Landlord and Tenant

Updated: 06 May 2022; Ref: scu.220500