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Three Sheffield tree protestors found in contempt of court – Sheffield City Council v (1) Crump (2) Grace (3) Compin (4) Brooke

DATE: 08 Jun 2018

This case involved the latest development in the dispute between Sheffield City Council and tree campaigners as to the Council’s decision to remove, and replace, a number of trees from its highways.

On 15 August 2017, Males J granted an injunction against three named defendants and persons unknown to prevent them entering safety zones on the public highway set-up around trees in order to fell them. Undertakings to the Court were made by several other defendants.

During a 3-day trial in the High Court, the Council alleged that the defendants had breached their undertakings to the Court or breached the injunction between December 2017 and March 2018.

By his judgment, dated 7 June 2018, Males J found Simon Crump, Fran Grace and Benoit Compin in contempt on all counts. Both Simon Crump and Benoit Compin were sentenced to two months’ imprisonment suspended for 12 months. The Judge reserved judgment in relation to the fourth defendant, Paul Brooke.

Yaaser Vanderman appeared as sole counsel for Sheffield City Council during the 3-day hearing.

Press coverage can be found in the BBC, the Guardian and ITV News.