R (On the application of Bizzy B Management Ltd) v Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council (2011)concerned an application for judicial review of a local authority's decision to proceed with demolition pursuant to a building notice issued under s79(1) Building Act 1984.
The claimant argued that (1) it was unnecessary for the local authority to spend public money given the existence of a viable alternative in the redevelopment scheme between Bizzy B Management Ltd and a third party. As a result, the local authority's decision was Wednesbury unreasonable; and (2) the decision to demolish amounted to an unjustified interference with its right to peaceful enjoyment of possessions under the European Convention on Human Rights 1960, Protocol 1, article 1.
Charles George Q.C, sitting as Deputy Judge of the Queen's Bench Division, in refusing the application, held (1) taking into consideration the dilapidated status of the building (which had worsened over the 11 years of the claimant's ownership), and the complex factual background surrounding the proposed re-development, the decision could not be said to be one which no other local authority would have made and therefore Wednesbury unreasonable; and (2) The enforcement of an unappealed building notice could not amount to an interference with property rights. In any event, any interference with the claimant's rights under the ECHR was justified given the public interest in finality.
Permission to appeal the decision granted.
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