Inner House case considering a lease of premises at Wardpark South Industrial Estate in Cumbernauld.  Batley were tenants and North Lanarkshire Council were sub-tenants.

At the centre of the dispute were works which the Council carried out to the property under a minute of agreement. In terms of the minute, the Council had to remove the works and re-instate the premises at the end of the agreement if they were required to do so by Batley.  Batley served a schedule of dilapidations after the end of the sublease.  However, the Council argued that the obligation to reinstate the premises died on the expiry of the sublease and therefore it did not require to comply.

In the Outer House, the temporary judge (Morag Wise QC) found that, in terms of the minute, there was no need for Batley to give written notice requiring removal of the works and allowed a proof to consider whether Batley had adequately conveyed its requirement for re-instatement when a surveyor acting on its behalf had telephoned the Council before the end of the sublease and indicated re-instatement would be required.

The Inner House allowed a reclaiming motion finding that the minute not only amended the sublease but also ratified provisions in the sublease. These included a provision incorporating a requirement for written notice which was contained in the lease. In the absence of such written notice there was no requirement on the Council to re-instate the premises. An attempt by Batley to claim the cost of re-instating the premises under the general repairing clause in the sublease also failed.

The full judgement is available from Scottish Courts here.