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Wallace v Barratt

Summary

Whether a tenant company's arrangement with a husband and wife partnership to farm an agricultural holding on its behalf could be construed as a breach of covenant by parting with occupation or sharing possession of the demised premises.

Facts

Landlord's appeal against dismissal of his appeal against an arbitrator's award holding that the appellant's notice to quit served on the tenant company of an agricultural holding on the ground of breach of covenant by sharing possession or occupation of the whole or part of the holding with a husband and wife partnership was of no effect.

Held

A corporate agricultural tenant could only carry on farming operations on an agricultural holding through an agent, It could only act through its servants or agents, not being a natural person. Accordingly there was no separate presence on the land by the partnership and the financial arrangements between the tenant company and the partnership did not alter the physical relationship of the tenant occupying the holding through its agent. The word 'occupation' in the covenant must have its normal meaning.
Appeal dismissed.

Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
Sir Richard Scott VC, Morritt LJ
Judgment date
19 March 1997
References

(1997) 74 P & CR 408 : [1997] 2 EGLR 1 : [1997] 31 EG 97 : [1997] EG 40 (CS)

Practice areas