Case Summaries: 28 June 1999

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THE FOLLOWING notes of judgments were prepared by the reporters of the All England Law Reports.


Re J (a child); Fam D (Wall J) 6 May 1999.

WHERE PARENTS or other persons having parental responsibility for a child were in dispute as to whether the child should be circumcised, the dispute should, if need be, be referred to the court for resolution as a matter of urgency. The welfare of the child was paramount, and the application for the child to be circumcised was one to which s 1(3) of the Children Act 1989 applied. Although a maternal veto was a very powerful consideration in the welfare equation, the court plainly had jurisdiction in an appropriate case to override that veto.


Harrison and anor v Bloom Camillin (a firm); Ch D (Neuberger J) 12 May 1999.

WHEN CONSIDERING an application to set aside or vary a witness summons under r 34.3(4) of the Civil Procedure Rules 1998 the court should be careful of relying on civil procedure cases decided under the old rules. Regard should be had, however, to the summary of the old law in Re State of Norway's Application (No 1) [1989] 1 All ER 661. When deciding whether or not to set aside or vary a witness summons, whilst the position of the witness should not be ignored, the interests of the witness would normally come second to those of the parties.

Hazel Williamson QC (Stephenson Harwood) for the witness; Ian Geering QC, Angharad Start (Reynolds Porter Chamberlain) for the defendant.

European Community

R v Secretary of State for the Home Dept, ex p International Lottery in Liechtenstein Foundation and anor; QBD, Crown Office List (Moses J) 14 June 1999.

THE PROVISIONS of ss 1 and 2 of the Lotteries and Amusements Act 1976, which prohibited all large lotteries except the National Lottery, were not inconsistent with the freedom to provide service enshrined in art 59 of the EC Treaty: the effect of the decision in Customs and Excise Commrs v Schindler [1994] 2 All ER 193 was that the UK was free to determine whether it was necessary to restrict large lotteries to a National Lottery for the purposes of protecting players and maintaining order in society.

Thomas Sharpe QC, Susanna Fitzgerald QC (D.J. Freeman) for the applicants; Philip Sales (Treasury Solicitor) for the Home Secretary.

Landlord and tenant

Rose v Stavrou; Ch D (Neuberger J) 9 June 1999.

WHERE A landlord had consented to a change in use of premises by a tenant the court would grant a declaration that he had so consented notwithstanding that the declaration would put him in breach of covenants in other leases to which he was a party.

Alistair Abbott (Rowe & Maw) for the tenant; Charles H. Joseph (Kenneth Shaw & Co) for the landlord.


Encon Insulation (Nottingham) Ltd) v Nottingham City Council; QBD, Crown Office List (David Pannick QC as a deputy High Court judge) 9 June 1999.

WHEN DETERMINING whether there had been a breach of reg 5(1)(a) of the Non Domestic Rating (Collection and Enforcement) (Local Lists) Regulations 1989, the question which the court had to ask itself was whether there were practicable steps which the council could and should have taken at an earlier stage than they had done to locate the relevant premises.

Guy Roots QC, Nicholas Burton (Pinsent Curtis, Leeds) for Encon Insulation; Godfrey Jarand (Legal Services Dept, Nottingham City Council) for the council.


R v Chief Constable of Greater Manchester, ex p Lainton; QBD Crown Office List (Jackson J) 10 June 1999.

AN ASSISTANT chief constable had, by virtue of his position and responsibilities, an implied delegated authority from the chief officer of police to exercise the power in reg 14(2) of the Police Regulations 1995 to extend the probationary period of a probationer constable on the chief constable's behalf.

Gavin Millar (Russell Jones & Walker, Leeds) for the applic- ant; Murray Hunt (Greater Manchester Police Authority) for the respondent.

Strike out

Securum Finance Ltd v Ashton and anor; Ch D (Ian Hunter QC as a deputy High Court judge) 10 June 1999.

WHERE AN action had been struck out for want of prosecution that did not amount to res judicata, since there had necessarily been no adjudication on the merits, and therefore no determination of any issue in the case which could properly found an estoppel.

Anthony de Garr Robinson (Sheridans) for the claimant; Peter Knox (Coldham Shield and Mace) for the defendants.