Page Motors v Epsom Borough Council: CA 9 Jul 1981

The plaintiffs were lessees of land neighbouring that of the Council. Over several years the council’s land had been occupied by gypsies who, it was said had damaged the plaintiff’s business. Though the Council had obtained a possession order in 1975, it had not enforced it for fear that the gypsies would, without alternative sites, cause problems elsewhere. The Council appealed against a finding that it had adopted the nuisance.
Held: The appeal failed. When the defendants had become aware of the damage being caused, to adjoining occupiers, they came under a duty to act, and had correctly been found liable from the date of the possession order. The obligations falling on the defendant as a public body may be wider than would fall on a private body. They were held liable without a finding of negligence.


[1981] 80 LGR 337


England and Wales


Appeal fromPage Motors Limited v Epsom and Ewell Borough Council QBD 1980
The plaintiff company were tenants of land adjoining land owned by the defendant council. Gypsies came to occupy the defendant’s land over several years and in increasing numbers. The Authority had obtained a possession order but had failed to . .
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 . .
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 . .
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 . .

Cited by:

CitedLippiatt and Febry v South Gloucestershire County Council CA 31-Mar-1999
The defendant had failed to remove travellers who had encamped on its land and caused nuisances against neighbouring farmers.
Held: The court refused to strike out a claim in nuisance by neighbouring land owners. It was arguable that a land . .
CitedCocking and Another v Eacott and Another CA 9-Mar-2016
The defendant appealed against a finding of nuisance by her despite her not occupying the property from which the nuisance (barking) emanated. The occupier, her daughter was present under a license rather than a tenancy. She would not have been . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Local Government, Nuisance

Updated: 12 May 2022; Ref: scu.190053