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RHJ Ltd v FT Patten (Holdings) Ltd & Anor [2008] EWCA Civ 151; [2008] Ch 341

DATE: 12 Mar 2008

Decision by the Court of Appeal relating to an office block in Liverpool city centre. The issue was the correct interpretation and application of section 3 of the Prescription Act 1832. The tenant claimed a right to light over the adjoining land by prescription, pursuant to section 3, Prescription Act 1832. Under section 3, where there has been actual enjoyment of continuous light for 20 years without written consent or agreement, then a right to light is acquired. It was common ground between the parties that the tenant had enjoyed 20 years of light without interruption. The question for the court was whether the reservation in the lease constituted a written agreement which would prevent the tenant from acquiring a right to light. Mr Justice Lewison concluded that it did and his decision was upheld by the Court of Appeal.

Stephen Bickford-Smith acted for the Appellant at first instance and on appeal.