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Jewelcraft Ltd v Pressland [2015] EWCA Civ 1111

DATE: 29 Oct 2015

The Court of Appeal (Patten, Vos and Tomlinson LJJ) reaffirmed the decision made by the House of Lords in Tandon v Spurgeon [1982] AC 755 that as a matter of law shops with living accommodation above are houses within the meaning of the Leasehold Reform Act 1967. 

The County Court Judge had held that the building was not a house because it did not look like one, and had no internal connection between the shop and flat above. He had followed the recent Court of Appeal decision in Henley v Cohen [2013] L&TR 28 in which it held that a shop with recently converted flat above was not a house. 

In Jewelcraft the Court of Appeal doubted that Henley v Cohen was correctly decided. It held that the central factor was the use of the flat, and that “there ought to be no warrant from now on for distinguishing between similar types of building solely on the basis of their external appearance or their internal layout.” 

The decision is available here. 

Tom Jefferies, led at the hearing in the Court of Appeal by Stephen Jourdan QC,  represented the Appellant, instructed by Maxwell Winward LLP.