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Edward Faulks QC Case List

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R (Tracey) v (1) Cambridge University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust (2) Secretary of State for Health

QBD (Admin) (Nicola Davies J) 21/12/2012


The court declined to hold a substantive hearing to investigate a hospital's non-resuscitation policy. It was particularly important, where ethical questions were concerned, that the court did not enunciate general propositions of principle outside of the particular factual context in which the issues arose. Courts should be reluctant to address ethical questions unless driven to do so by the need to resolve a practical problem.

JGE v Trustees of the Portsmouth Roman Catholic Diocesan Trust

[2012] EWCA Civ 938


The relationship between a Roman Catholic parish priest and a bishop was sufficiently close in character to that of employee and employer to make it just and fair to hold a diocese vicariously liable for the wrongful acts of one of its priests.

(1) AC (2) DC (3) TR v Devon County Council

[2012] EWHC 796 QB


A local authority was liable, under the Highways Act 1980 s.41, for personal injury sustained in a road traffic accident where it had failed to take such care as was reasonably required to ensure that the highway was not a danger to traffic by carrying out monthly inspections in accordance with the relevant codes of practice for highway maintenance management.

An Informer v Chief Constable

[2012] EWCA Civ 197


Although the police were under a duty of care in respect of the safety and well-being of an informer who was authorised as a covert human intelligence source, the duty of care did not extend to economic loss.

JGE v English Province of Our Lady of Charity (1) Trustees of the Portsmouth Roman Catholic Diocesan Trust (2)

[2011] EWHC 2871 (QBD)


A Roman Catholic diocese could be vicariously liable for the wrongful acts of one of its priests given the nature and closeness of the relationship between them.

JGR v English Province of Our Lady of Charity (1) Trustees of the Portsmouth Roman Catholic Diocesan Trust (2)

[2011] EWHC 2871 (QBD)


A Roman Catholic diocese could be vicariously liable for the wrongful acts of one of its priests given the nature and closeness of the relationship between them.

OOO & Others v Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis

[2011] EWHC 1246 (QB)




Furmedge & Others v Chester-le-Street District Council and Others

[2011] EWHC 1226 (QB)


Events company Brouhaha International Limited found 55% to blame for the incident in this case which involved a large, tent like, inflatable art structure designed by artist Maurice Agis take off in July 2006, killing 2 and injurying many more. The finding was made in contribution proceedings brought by Chester-le-Street District Council, the apportionment of blame being as between those two parties only. Had the now deceased artist, Maurice Agis, been a party to the proceedings it is likely he would have carried most of the blame. However, he was uninsured and had no assets.

Stevenson (1) Hinton (2) Taylor (3) v Southwark London Borough Council

[2011] EWHC 108 (QB)




Claimants alleged that business failed because of defendants refusal to grant full planning permission.  Claim dismissed.

Everett & Anor v Comojo (UK) Ltd (T/A The Metropolitan & Others)

[2011] EWCA Civ 13


There was a duty of care on the management of a nightclub in respect of the actions of third parties on the premises but the standard of care imposed or the scope of the duty had to be fair, just and reasonable. As between the managers of a nightclub and guests, there should not be a higher degree of foreseeability than was required under the common duty of care in the Occupiers' Liability Act 1957.

Clift v Slough Borough Council

[2010] EWCA Civ 1171


Where a local authority had included a person on its Violent Persons Register and had emailed it to certain customer-facing departments and to supernumerary departments, a judge, hearing the subsequent claim for libel, had been right to hold that the publication to supernumerary departments was disproportionate and in breach of the individual's rights under the European Convention on Human Rights 1950 art.8. As such the local authority could not rely on qualified privilege as a defence.

VL v Oxfordshire County Council

[2010] EWHC 2091


This case raised the interesting and important question of the extent to which a local authority’s child care team (social workers and lawyers) owe a duty to a child in care to make an application on the child’s behalf for criminal injuries compensation.

The claimant had suffered catastrophic injuries at the hand of her father as an infant. She was made the subject of a care order in 1994. In 1997 the Council made an application for compensation for her under the new Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (“CICA”) scheme which was introduced on 1 April 1996. The claimant, represented by the Official Solicitor, alleged that her claim should have been made before 1 April 1996 under the old Criminal Injuries Compensation Board (“CICB”) scheme which the CICA scheme replaced. She would have received substantially higher compensation under the old CICB scheme (potentially millions of pounds higher).

MacKay J rejected her claim. He held that whilst the Council undoubtedly had a power to make a claim for criminal injuries compensation on behalf of the claimant, it did not owe a duty of care in tort to do so. The child care team’s primary focus was on the physical welfare and safety of the claimant and trying to rebuild her family unit, the Council’s child care plan being to rehabilitate the claimant with her parents. The fact that the council saw itself as being under a duty to make criminal injury compensation claims on behalf of children in its care was a factor but was not determinative of the legal position. Imposing a duty to promote the claimant’s financial interests would not be fair just or reasonable given the delicacy of the relationship between the Council and the claimant’s mother, who herself was having difficulty accepting the responsibility of the claimant’s father for the injuries and resented the involvement of social services. The judge also concluded that even if a duty had been owed, it had not been breached as judged by the Bolam standard: on the evidence there had been little publicity concerning the impact of the new scheme at the time it was introduced and a solicitor acting in a local authority child care team could reasonably not have known that the new scheme would adversely affect claims for injuries which had been suffered before it was introduced.

This decision is not being appealed. There have been a number of claims threatened against local authorities in recent years for not making applications for criminal injuries compensation timeously or at all and the case will be of particular interest to those involved in them. Whilst in some respects the decision is fact specific, it is clear that the courts will be wary of imposing a duty which would promote the economic interests of a child over child welfare plans or cut across delicate social work decisions. Moreover, child care solicitors in a local authority’s legal department are not to be judged by the same standard as personal injury solicitors in private practice.

Lord Faulks QC and Andrew Warnock appeared for the Defendant Council.

Harvey v Plymouth City Council

[2010] EWCA Civ 860


When a local authority licensed the public to use its land for recreational purposes, it was consenting to normal recreational activities, carrying normal risks, and its duty as occupier to an implied licensee could not be stretched to cover any form of activity, however reckless.

A v Essex County Council

[2010] UKSC 33; (2010) 3 WLR 509; (2010) 4 All ER 199


A priest's sexual abuse of the claimant had been so closely connected with his employment as a priest that it would be fair and just to hold the archdiocese which had employed him vicariously liable for that abuse.

Savage v South Essex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust


An NHS foundation trust had breached its positive obligation under the European Convention on Human Rights 1950 art.2 to protect the life of a mentally ill woman who had committed suicide after absconding from one of its hospitals.

Connor v Surrey County Council

[2010] EWCA Civ 286; (2010) 3 All ER 905; (2010) 3 WLR 1302


The law would, in an appropriate case, require a duty-ower to fulfil a pre-existing private law duty by the exercise of a public law discretion, but only if that could be done consistently with the duty-ower's full performance of his public law obligations. In the instant case, a local education authority's negligence in failing to establish, pursuant to the School Standards and Framework Act 1998 s.14 and s.16A, an interim executive board of school governors had caused one of its employees to suffer personal injury in the form of psychiatric damage.

Maga v Trustees of the Birmingham Archdiocese of the Roman Catholic Church

[2010] EWCA Civ 256; (2010) 1 WLR 1441


The failure for a period of 18 months to cater for the special educational needs of a child did not constitute a denial of the child's right to education under the European Convention on Human Rights 1950 Protocol 1 art.2.

AB & Others v Nugent Care Society

[2010] EWHC 1005 (QB)


The correct approach to compensating claims of historic physical and sexual abuse at children's homes where the consequences fell short of any psychiatric diagnosis was to consider the adverse psychological consequences as part of the picture to be borne in mind when considering the level of general damages for the assault suffered.

West Sussex County Council v Russell

[2010] EWCA Civ 71




A judge was entitled to find that a highway authority had breached its duty of care under the Highways Act 1980 s.41(1) by failing to remedy a difference in height of between 6 and 12 inches between a verge and a carriageway.




Buckley & Ors v Chief Constable of Thames Valley Police

[2009] EWCA Civ 356


This case considered the correct approach to the issue of whether a police officer had reasonable grounds for suspicion of a suspect’s involvement in an offence.  The court concluded that the factors considered by the officer should be examined on a cumulative rather than an individual basis.

X & Y v Hounslow London Borough Council

[2009] EWCA Civ 286


A public authority which is trying to exercise its statutory powers and duties does not, without some additional ingredient, assume a responsibility in the law of Tort.  Thus a social worker who visited the claimant was merely performing her statutory duty which did not itself give rise to a private law cause of action.

Peters v Dr P Halstead and East Midland Health Authority

[2009] EWCA Civ 145


The Court held that there was no duty to mitigate in the circumstances where an individual elected for damages to pay for a care home even if it was the same care home that was provided free by the local authority pursuant to its statutory duty.  The preference for private funding expressed by a claimant's deputy was not as a matter of law capable of challenge.  However the court rejected the council's appeal against the judge's decision that it was not entitled to charge the claimant for providing the care home albeit that she had been awarded damages to pay for such care.

Savage v South Essex Partnership NHS Foundation


Whether mental health professionals could be sued under the Human Rights Act where they had made mistakes but there was no claim in negligence.

Chief Constable of Hertfordshire v Van Colle; Smith v Chief Constable of Sussex

[2008] UKHL 50


Conjoined appeals.  In the absence of special circumstances, the police owed no common law duty of care to protect individuals against harm caused by criminals.

Smith v Chief Constable of Sussex

[2008] EWCA Civ 39


Claim by a victim of an assault who alleged that the police negligently failed to protect him. 

Peters v Nottingham Health Authority & Anor

[2008] EWHC 778 (QB)


Damages; assessment; cost of care.  The case assessed the damages payable to a claimant with congenital rubella syndrome following an admission of liability by an NHS Trust and a GP.  Held that as a matter of law the council had no power to take account of any capital sum held by the Court of Protection, any income generated by that capital or any payments of that capital on behalf of the claimant.  However, the future provision to the claimant and the council's legal responsibility for providing it were uncertain.  Cost of future care awarded on a full life basis.

Young v Catholic Care (Diocese of Leeds) and others

[2008] UKHL 6


Case concerned limitation, abuse, and the date of knowledge provisions.  The House of Lords concluded that a construction of the legislation which had been reached by the Court of Appeal in Bryn Alyn that allowed a generous interpretation was wrong so that the claimant was held to have had knowledge of the abuse at the time that it occurred. 

Van Colle v Chief Constable of Hertfordshire

[2007] EWCA Civ 325; LTL 24/4/2007


The Court of Appeal held that the police had been under a duty to take preventative measures to protect Giles Van Colle and had breached that duty.  They had therefore acted incompatibly with the European Convention on Human Rights 1950 Art 2.  The judge's damages award at first instance under the Human Rights Act 1998 s8 had been too high and should be reduced.

Appiah & Anor v Bishop Douglass Roman Catholic High School Governors

LTL 26/1/2007; [2007] EWCA Civ 10


The Court of Appeal found that in claims of race discrimination and victimisation, the mere establishment of a difference of race and treatment was not enough to cause the burden of proof to be transferred under the Race Relations Act 1976 s. 57ZA, and if a claimant had not at least established facts from which a prima facie case of discrimination could be inferred

R (on the application of Jane Laporte) v Chief Constable of Gloucestershire

LTL 13/12/2006; [2007] 2 WLR 46; [2006] UKHL 55; Times, December 14, 2006


Police decision to turn back coaches from RAF/USAF airbase - scope of police powers to control public demonstrations - effect of Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 sections 60 and section 60AA - whether action short of arrest justified when breach of the peace not sufficiently imminent to justify arrest - whether Albert v Lavin still good law - whether police had shown the least restriction necessary to rights of freedom of speech and peaceful assembly under ECHR articles (10) and (11) - whether preventive action against innocent person justified where no other means of preventing imminent breach of the peace.

A (1) B (2) & Ors v Nugent Care Society (formerly Catholic Social Service (Liverpool))

[2006] EWHC 2986 LTL 1/12/2006


Any claimant seeking to claim damages by way of an action in negligence for sexual abuse suffered in the 1960s and 1970s had formidable forensic hurdles to surmount, not helped by the absence of any specifically tailored limitation statute and it was only on a case by case basis that limitation findings could be made. However, in relation to one of the claimants relief was granted in accordance with the Limitation Act 1980 s. 33 on the basis that the care society in whose care he was placed had failed to put into place adequate systems to protect that claimant from abuse by his headmaster and had therefore failed to fulfil their duty of care to him.

Catholic Care (Diocese of Leeds) & Anor v Young

LTL 14/11/2006; [2006] EWCA Civ 1534; Times, November 22, 2006


The test under the Limitation Act 1980 s. 14(2) to determine when a person would reasonably have considered an injury to be sufficiently serious to justify his instituting proceedings for damages was an objective one. That a person was inhibited by the injury itself from instituting proceedings was a factor to be taken into account.

Catholic Care (Diocese of Leeds) (1) Home Office (2) v Kevin Raymond Young

LTL 14/11/2006; [2006] EWCA Civ 1534; Times, November 22, 2006


The test under the Limitation Act 1980 s. 14(2) to determine when a person would reasonably have considered an injury to be sufficiently serious to justify his instituting proceedings for damages was an objective one. That a person was inhibited by the injury itself from instituting proceedings was a factor to be taken into account.

KR & Ors v Royal & Sun Alliance Plc

LTL 3/11/2006; [2006] EWCA Civ 1454; Times, November 8, 2006, [2007] Bus LR 139


The true intention of an exclusion clause in a combined insurance policy issued to a company that ran children’s homes was to exclude liability for damage or injury caused by deliberate acts of persons who were to be regarded as in effect the insured company, as opposed to the acts of those who were mere employees. The deliberate acts of abuse by the majority shareholder and managing director fell to be attributed to the company and were within the exclusion as were the acts of those who were at the time of the abuse directors or de facto heads of the individual homes. Those were “managerial employees” but that expression did not include anyone further down the company hierarchy.

Department for Transport, Environment & the Regions v Mott Macdonald Ltd & Ors

LTL 27/7/2006; [2006] 1 WLR 3356; [2006] NPC 97; [2006] EWCA Civ 1089; Times, August 17, 2006


A highway authority’s duty to maintain under the Highways Act 1980 s. 41(1) included keeping relevant drains clear, and Burnside v Emerson (1968) 1 WLR 1490 was still good law.

Ashley & Anor v Chief Constable of Sussex

LTL 27/7/2006; [2006] EWCA Civ 1085;Times, August 30, 2006


The Court of Appeal held that a defendant could rely on self-defence to a claim for damages for assault and battery if he showed that he mistakenly but reasonably and honestly thought that it was necessary to defend himself against attach or an imminent risk of attach, and that the force he used was reasonable.

French & Ors v Chief Constable of Sussex

LTL 28/3/2006; [2006] EWCA Civ 312; Times, April 5, 2006


The Court of Appeal held that claims by police officers for psychiatric injuries allegedly suffered as a result of a fatal shooting, which they had not witnessed, and which had led to criminal and disciplinary proceedings against them that had led to stress and the injuries complained of, were struck out on the basis that they were bound to fail on grounds of causation and remoteness.

Ali v Lord Grey School

LTL 22/3/2006; [2006] 2 WLR 690; [2006] 2 All ER 457; [2006] HRLR 20; [2006] UKH L14; Times, March 22, 2006; Independent, March 28, 2006;


The House of Lords held that the European Convention on Human Rights 1950 Protocol 1 Art. 2 did not confer a right to be educated at a particular school but rather conferred a right not to be denied access to the general level of educational provision available in the Member State.  On the evidence a pupil had not been excluded from school education in breach of his Convention rights in circumstances where he had chosen not to take up the school’s invitation to attend a meeting to re-admit him to the school, nor its offers to provide work for him to do from home and to arrange alternative tuition.

Clough v First Choice Holidays & Flights Ltd

LTL 25/1/2006; [2006] PIQR P22; [2006] NPC 8; [2006] EWCA Civ 15


In cases of personal injury involving a single, specific occasion of negligence the claimant was required to show that the defendant’s negligence caused, or materially contributed to, the injury. The distinction between material contribution to damage and material contribution to the risk of damage had no application in those circumstances.

Brown v Birmingham & Black Country Strategic Health Authority & Ors

LTL 29/6/2005; [2005] EWHC 1098


Notwithstanding the claimant's symptoms, neither her doctor nor medical staff at a hospital where she was examined were at fault for failing to diagnose and treat a congenital spinal defect that resulted in her contracting meningitis and subsequently suffering from a disability.

Walton v Calderdale Healthcare NHS Trust

LTL 25/5/2005; [2006] PIQR Q3; [2005] Lloyd’s Rep Med; [2005] EWHC 1053


Where a claimant had established that his reasonable care needs required annual periodic payments at a set rate, an onus was placed on the defendant to show that local authorities could wholly or partially satisfy the claimant’s reasonable needs before there could be any reduction to the set rate.

JD & Ors v East Berkshire Community Health NHS Trust & Ors

LTL 21/4/2005; [2005] 2 AC 373; [2005] 2 WLR 993; [2005] 2 All ER 443; [2005] 2 FLR 284; [2005] Lloyd’s Rep Med 263; [2005] 83 BMLR 66; [2005] UKHL 23; Times, April 22, 2005; Independent, April 27, 2005


Health professionals responsible for investigating suspected child abuse did not owe a parent suspected of having committed the abuse a duty sounding in damages if they carried out that investigation in good faith but carelessly.

W v Westminster City Council & Ors

LTL 21/2/2005; [2005] 4 All ER 96; [2005] EWHC 102


Where a local authority had pleaded qualified privilege in defending itself and its social workers against a claim in defamation, the relationship between the social workers was an established one requiring free and frank communication on all relevant questions, and the fact that the information in the words was not verified could not take the care outside qualified privilege unless the defendants were deliberately publishing what they knew to be outside official guidance known to them. Although the publication was an interference with the claimant’s rights under the European Convention on Human Rights 1950 Art. 8, monetary compensation was not required to afford him just satisfaction.

DN (by his father and litigation friend RN) v Greenwich London Borough

LTL 8/12/2004; [2005] BLGR 597; [2004] EWCA Civ 1659; Times, December 23, 2004


A local education authority was liable for the negligence of an educational psychologist who had failed, among other things, to identify the claimant

Godden & Ors v Kent & Medway Strategic Health Authority

LTL 4/8/2004; [2004] Lloyd's Rep Med 521; [2004] EWHC 1629


It was arguable that a health authority could be held vicariously liable for the acts of a general practitioner who had indecently assaulted and possibly negligently treated his patients, and on that basis a claim for damages brought against the health authority by the patients concerned was not struck out as having no reasonable grounds.

Eagle v Chambers

LTL 29/7/2004; [2004] 1 WLR 3081; [2005] 1 All ER 136; [2005] PIQR Q2; [2004] Lloyd’s Rep Med 413; [2005] 82 BMLR 22; [2003] EWHC 3135; Times, August 30, 2004


In the circumstances, no sum was awarded regarding panel brokers’ fees, which would be incurred by the claimant on investment advice sought following receipt of an award of damages. The fact that the claimant was a patient did not affect that conclusion.

Adams v Bracknell Forest Borough Council

LTL 17/6/2004; [2005] 1 AC 76; [2004] 3 WLR 89; [2004] 3 All ER 897; [2004] ELR 459; [2005] PIQR P2; [2004] 101(26) LSG 28; [2004] UK HL 29 Times, June 24, 2004


There was no reason why the normal expectation that a person suffering from a significant injury would be curious about its origins should not also apply to dyslexics. Therefore, on the facts of the instant case, the claimant’s date of constructive knowledge was well before three years before issue of the writ and his claim was thus statute-barred under the Limitation Act 1980 s. 11.

Taylor v Nugent Care Society (formerly Catholic Social Services, Liverpool)

LTL 19/1/2004; (2004) 1 WLR 1129; (2004) 3 All ER 671; [2004] EWCA Civ 51; Times, January 28, 2004; Independent, January 22, 2004


It was not an abuse of process of the court for a claimant to proceed with his claim notwithstanding that he had commenced proceedings that raised issues covered by a group litigation order and was refused permission to join the group action out of time. If the claimant brought proceedings that ran parallel to the group action, the court was entitled to manage the proceedings in a way that took account of directions enforced upon the parties to the group action.

A (1) B (2) v Essex County Council

LTL 17/12/2003; [2004] 1 WLR 1881; [2004] 1 FLR 749; EWCA Civ 1848 Times, January 22, 2004; Independent, January 16, 2004


It was not fair, just and reasonable to impose on professionals involved in compiling reports for adoption agencies a duty of care towards prospective adopters. However, adoption agencies had a duty to communicate to prospective adopters information which the agencies decided that they should have.

McDonnell v Congregation of Christian Brothers

LTL 4/12/2003; [2004] 1 AC 1101, HL; [2003] 3 WLR 1627; [2004] 1 ALL ER 641; [2004] ELR 11; Times, December 5, 2003


The appellant

Various Claimants v Bryn Alyn Community (Holdings) Ltd (In Liquidation) & Anor

LTL 10/6/2003; [2003] 3 WLR 107; [2003] EWCA Civ 85


Where the Court of Appeal was dealing with an appeal and then an appeal ancillary to the main appeal on issues under CPR Part 36, the sealing of the order on the main appeal did not preclude the court considering whether Part 36 orders should be made in favour of three claimants not previously made party to the Part 35 appeal.

Bradford-Smart v West Sussex County Council

LTL 23/1/2002; [2002] ELR 139; [2002] EWCA Civ 07; Times, January 29, 2002; Independent, January 29, 2002


An unsuccessful appeal from a finding that a local authority was not in breach of its duty to a school pupil by failing to prevent the pupil from being bullied outside school. However, the Court of Appeal recognised that a school might occasionally be in breach of duty for failing to take steps within its power to combat the harmful behaviour of one pupil towards another outside school.

Fairchild v Glenhaven Funeral Services Ltd & Ors; and associated cases.

LTL 11/12/2001; [2002] IRLR 129; [2002] 1 WLR 1052; [2002] ICR 412; Times, December 13, 2001"


Where a claimant had suffered asbestos-induced mesothelioma after having been negligently exposed to asbestos dust during the course of employment with more than one employer, in circumstances where he could not prove which defendant’s breach of duty was the cause of the disease, it was sufficient for a claimant to prove that a defendant materially increased the risk of injury. Such a claimant did not have to satisfy the “but for” causation test.

Johnson v Unisys Ltd

LTL 22/3/2001; [2003] 1 AC 518; [2001] 2 WLR 1076; [2001] 2 All ER 801; [2001] ICR 480; [2001] IRLR 279; Independent, March 29, 2001; Times, March 23, 2001


The decision of the House of Lords in Addis v Gramophone Co Ltd (1909) AC 488 was not itself an obstacle to the recovery by an employee of damages for injured feelings, mental distress or damage to his reputation arising out of the manner of his dismissal where the cause of action relied upon was breach of an implied term concerning trust and confidence, rather than wrongful dismissal. However, such a newly-developed common law right could not satisfactorily coexist with the statutory right of an employee not to be unfairly dismissed.

L (A Minor) (1) P (Father) (2) v Reading Borough Council (1) Chief Constable of Thames Valley Police (2)

LTL 12/3/2001; (2001) 1 WLR 1575; (2001) 2 FLR 50


It was arguable that there was sufficient proximity in an interview between a police officer and a suspected child victim for a duty of care to have arisen. It was also arguable that a suspect was owed a duty of care where there had been no evidence to support criminal proceedings yet a police officer had concluded that a complaint of child abuse was of sufficient substance that the child was at risk of abuse from the suspect. Further, it was arguable that witness immunity should not have been used to shield the police from suit whilst acting as law enforcers or investigators and a decision to the contrary could have been disproportionate to the public interest both under common law and the jurisprudence of the Convention.

Phelps v Hillingdon London Borough Council; and associated cases

LTL 27/7/2000; [2002] 1 AC 619; [2000] LGR 651; [2000] 3 WLR 776; [2000] 4 All ER 504; [2000] 56 BMLR 1; Times, July 28, 2000; Independent, November 13, 2000


A local education authority could be vicariously liable for the negligent acts and omissions of its employees, including educational psychologists and teachers, that caused loss, injury or damage to their students.

W & Ors v Essex County Council & Anor

LTL 16/3/2000; [2000] 2 WLR 601; [2000] 2 All ER 237; [2000] 1 FLR 657; [2000] LGR 281; [2000] 53 BMLR 1; Times, March 17, 2000


The issue in a strike out application was whether, if the facts were proved, the claim must still fail, and it was not enough to recognise that the claimants might have difficulties in establishing their claim. Foster parents who claimed psychiatric illness due to the abuse of their children by a child placed in their care by the council, could pursue their claim for damages against the council and social worker to trial.

Kent v Griffiths & Ors

LTL 3/2/2000; [2001] QB 36; [2000] 2 WLR 1158; [2000] 2 All ER 474; Times, February 10, 2000; Independent, February 9, 2000


An ambulance service could owe a duty of care to a member of the public on whose behalf a 999 call had been made if the ambulance failed to arrive within a reasonable time through carelessness.

Penney & Anor v East Kent Health Authority

LTL 16/11/99; [2000] Lloyd’s Rep Med 41; [2000] 55 BMLR 63; [2000] PnLR 323; Independent, November 24, 1999


Where the evidence established that cervical smear slides showed clear abnormalities, no reasonably competent primary cytoscreener could treat those abnormalities as innocuous such as to justify, with absolute confidence, a negative result. The trial judge necessarily had an advantage over an appellate court in assessing the weight to be attached to expert evidence and, in cases such as the present, the appellate court should be careful to ensure that it acted as a court of review.

Capital & Counties Plc v Hampshire County Council & Ors; and associated cases

LTL 14/3/97; [1997] 3 WLR 331; [1997] 2 All ER 865; Independent, April 10, 1997; Times, March 20, 1997


A fire brigade owes no duty of care to the owner of a burning building to turn up at the fire or even to perform competently when it is actually at the scene of the fire although there is a sufficiently proximate relationship between individual fire officers and the owner/occupier to give rise to a duty of care on their part when performing their duties at the scene.

X (Minors) v Bedfordshire County Council; and associated cases

LTL 30/6/95; [1995] 2 AC 663; [1995] 3 WLR 152; [1995] 3 All ER 353; [1995] 2 FLR 276; [1995] 3 FCR 337; [1995] 7 Admin LR 705; [1995] Fam Law 537; Times, June 30, 1995; Independent, June 30, 1995


The rights of individuals to seek private law remedies for breaches of public law duties did not arise unless it could be shown that the statute creating the duty also intended a remedy and that the exercise of the discretion was outside the ambit of the discretion created by statute.