Stoke-On-Trent City Council v B and Q (Retail) Ltd: HL 1984

The defendants had been trading on Sundays in breach of s.47 of the Shops Act 1950, which, by s.71(1) imposed on every local authority the duty to enforce within their district the provisions of that Act. Parliament has given local authorities a special status to bring proceedings in their own name, thereby overcoming the difficulties which existed at common law in bringing civil proceedings in aid of public law. However the court should be slow to grant powers which risked the infringer in sanctions more onerous than the penalty imposed for the offence. S.222(1) confers on a local authority power to institute and maintain proceedings to enforce obedience to the criminal law within their district, being a power additional to the power at common law enabling the Attorney-General to proceed in such matters either ex officio or by relator action.


Lord Templeman


[1984] 1 AC 754


Local Government Act 1972 222(1), Shops Act 1950 47 71(1)


England and Wales


CitedGouriet v Union of Post Office Workers HL 26-Jul-1977
The claimant sought an injunction to prevent the respondent Trades Union calling on its members to boycott mail to South Africa. The respondents challenged the ability of the court to make such an order.
Held: The wide wording of the statute . .

Cited by:

CitedWorcestershire County Council v Tongue and others ChD 6-Aug-2003
The defendants had been convicted of offences involving mistreatment of animals, and debarred from having custody of animals. They were now in breach of that order, and the council sought a civil order allowing it access to their land to remove any . .
CitedWorcestershire County Council v Tongue, Tongue, and Tongue CA 17-Feb-2004
The defendants had been convicted of animal welfare offences, and banned from keeping animals. The claimant sought to enter the premises to remove animals, but were denied entry.
Held: The court had no power to make an order to allow access . .
CitedGuildford Borough Council v Hein CA 27-Jul-2005
The council sought an injunction under the section against the defendant to restrain her from keeping dogs on her premises for animal welfare purposes.
Held: The defendant’s appeal was allowed in part. There had to be shown something more than . .
CitedBirmingham City Council v Shafi and Another CA 30-Oct-2008
The Council appealed a finding that the court did not have jurisdiction to obtain without notice injunctions to control the behaviour of youths said to be creating a disturbance, including restricting their rights to enter certain parts of the city . .
CitedHall and Others v Mayor of London (on Behalf of The Greater London Authority) CA 16-Jul-2010
The appellants sought leave to appeal against an order for possession of Parliament Square on which the claimants had been conducting a demonstration (‘the Democracy Village’).
Held: Leave was refused save for two appellants whose cases were . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Local Government

Updated: 12 April 2022; Ref: scu.186523