A landlord who decided to go for a stroll when the hearing of his case was delayed was left to count the cost of the judge’s displeasure recently.

During the hot weather last July, the landlord, who was contesting his tenant’s right to have her deposit refunded, attended Guildford County Court for the hearing. As is common, the court timetable was running late, with the result that the case, originally scheduled for 11.30am, was expected to be heard up to an hour later. The landlord ignored the court usher’s advice to stay within the court building and went out where it was cooler. When the case was called for hearing at noon, he was nowhere to be found, despite the strenuous efforts made by the court officials to locate him.

The case was heard in his absence and, added to the £300 deposit, were witness costs totalling more than £150.