QUEEN'S BENCH DIVISION
B e f o r e :
|The Queen on the application of|
|(1) NEIL ANDREW HERRON|
|(2) PARKING APPEALS LIMITED||Claimants|
|- v -|
|THE PARKING ADJUDICATOR||Defendant|
|SUNDERLAND CITY COUNCIL|
Wordwave International Ltd (a Merrill Communications Company)
165 Fleet Street, London EC4
Telephone No: 020 7404 1400; Fax No 020 7404 1424
(Official Shorthand Writers to the Court)
appeared on behalf of the Claimants
Mr Ian Rogers (instructed by the Traffic Penalty Tribunal, Manchester M1 3DZ) appeared on behalf of the Defendant
Mr Stephen Sauvain QC and Mr Jonathan Easton (instructed by the
City Solicitor, Sunderland City Council, Sunderland SR2 7DN)
appeared on behalf of the Interested Party
Crown Copyright ©
Monday 15 June 2009
MR JUSTICE KEITH:
MR MISHCON: My Lord, I would have said certainly within a day. If one is optimistic one might say half a day; but if one is cautious, a day.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: Mr Sauvain?
MR SAUVAIN: Well, including judgment, I would say a day and a half.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: I would have thought it is more likely that judgment would be reserved. I cannot speak for the judge who decides the case. He might be able to deliver an ex tempore judgment. But you would say a day and a half?
MR SAUVAIN: I would say out of caution a day and a half in any event. As your Lordship has made clear, it is necessary to go through this in some careful detail.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: Yes, it is. Yes, on balance I think that is right. I am going to say a day and a half for the time estimate for the hearing. Time for the judge to read the papers beforehand? I spent six hours on the papers over the weekend. Admittedly, the judge would have to read less because of the issues that are no longer being addressed. I would have thought four hours might be realistic. What would you say?
MR SAUVAIN: My Lord, we have not given our attention as to whether we will need to put in any evidence. I suspect, in fact, we may not need to as it is really a matter of law, but I reserve my position on that.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: Yes. You have 35 days.
MR SAUVAIN: Yes.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: My only question is: how long should the Administrative Court Office set aside for reading time?
MR SAUVAIN: Yes, I understand that, my Lord, but whether we put in evidence affects that --
MR JUSTICE KEITH: You are right.
MR SAUVAIN: -- but probably only marginally, I suspect. I would say certainly four hours, my Lord. Possibly five actually.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: I will say four hours. Four hours for the judge to read the papers. I will say not to be tried by a Deputy High Court Judge. I think it should be tried by a High Court Judge. I know nothing about the Dickinson case, but from what the two of you know about the Dickinson case, is this a case in which, in view of the only issue which now remains to be addressed, the Dickinson case, if it has not already been heard, should be heard at the same time as this?
MR SAUVAIN: My Lord, I know very little about it, but what I do know suggests to me that it is on a different issue, in fact.
MR MISHCON: My Lord, can I just read one line? It is point number 6 signed by Mr Dickinson in his particulars: "The adjudicator had no regard to the Traffic Signs Regulations and General Directions 2002".
MR JUSTICE KEITH: I do not know whether or not permission to proceed with the case has been given on that ground.
MR MISHCON: It was adjourned. It was not limited in any way.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: Often they are. Often they are. You are saying in this case Miss Davies did not?
MR MISHCON: No, I have seen the order. There was no proviso or qualification or limitation.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: I see. It may be immaterial because she gave permission to proceed last December and it may be that it has already been decided. Do you know whether it has been decided?
MR MISHCON: No, it has not. I think the Administrative Court are aware of this case, and obviously no one knew what would happen until today, but I think Mr Dickinson, who is also aware of these proceedings, has been notified in order that should there be two cases before the court for a full hearing, at least the possibility could take place.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: It is plain that I cannot decide today whether or not the case actually does raise the same issue because one would have had, I think, to look at the detailed grounds submitted by Mr Dickinson in any skeleton argument now submitted to see the extent to which there is an overlap with our issue. So I am not going to make an order that the two cases be listed together, but both sides, I think, should ask to see the pleadings and the skeleton argument in that case to decide whether or not an application should be made to the Administrative Court Office for them to be listed together.
MR MISHCON: My Lord, could I -- I know that Mr Rogers wants to address you on this and he should -- my understanding is that he is instructed in the case of Dickinson, only recently, but he has been instructed. I have seen all the papers and, without meaning to be rude at all to Mr Dickinson because we know that he is a litigant in person and he is just doing things as best he can, the papers that were lodged with the court were served on the Parking Adjudicator. There was a carrier bag full of miscellaneous statements and photocopies -- article 6 being one of them -- and references to the regulations to which we have referred today.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: Is he still unrepresented?
MR MISHCON: He is, my Lord.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: In that case is not the best order to make that this case be heard before Mr Dickinson's case, and whether Mr Dickinson's case should proceed should be decided after judgment has been handed down in this case.
MR SAUVAIN: My Lord, that does not affect me at all --
MR JUSTICE KEITH: No, it does not.
MR SAUVAIN: -- although it affects Mr Rogers.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: Mr Dickinson himself is not here and so it is difficult for him, and therefore, having raised the issue, I have not thought about whether or not that would be appropriate. What do you want to say, Mr Rogers?
MR ROGERS: My Lord, I will be very brief. As on the last occasion, I did bring along the pleadings from the Dickinson case. It is fair to say that the defendant did not attend either of the permission hearings in that case. Mr Dickinson is unrepresented, but I think physically, as I understand it from the pleadings, there is no issue about instruction of regulation 4 of the CPZ issue. It may be a TSRGD issue, but there are lots of those issues. So to say that this is a case on the same point -- it is really for the claimant to do a lot more. The only thing I am asked to mention is that there is consideration being given as to whether the Dickinson case should be transferred to the Upper Tribunal, and there has been no decision on that as yet.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: I understand.
MR ROGERS: So, my Lord, simply to assist the court, it is our position that this is not the same issue. It is fair to say I have a note prepared by Hull County Council and Deputy Judge Davies QC asked -- it says in the order that she has asked that the defendant consider whether to grant a full oral hearing. There is nothing from the note to say that this is a common issue. My Lord, I am happy to show you that.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: No. I think the more we have talked about it, the right course is for me to make no order in relation to Mr Dickinson's case. I certainly do not order that it be tried with this case, but it may be that consideration should be given as to whether or not, if Mr Dickinson's case remains in the Administrative Court, rather than in the Upper Tribunal, it should be heard after this case rather than before it. I cannot make any order about that.
Are there any other directions that anyone wants? No? Costs have to be addressed at some stage. I am inclined to say at the moment that the costs should be reserved to the judge who hears the claim for judicial review. I am concerned with the costs of the defendant in relation to the issues upon which they have succeeded because supposing Mr Mishcon succeeds on the core issue of principle? That does not necessarily mean he should get all his costs against the defendant because he has failed on an issue which today I have said is the issue that the defendant had wanted to address me. So I think all in all, unless anyone thinks otherwise, the right course to take about the costs of today is that they should be reserved to the judge who hears the application. Do you wish to say anything against that?
MR MISHCON: My Lord, not.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: Mr Sauvain?
MR SAUVAIN: No.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: Mr Rogers?
MR ROGERS: My Lord, no.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: That is the order I make then. Thank you all very much. Could you find out why it was that there was no reference in Dobbs J's order to the fact that half a day was reserved for this hearing? Why was no attempt made to have the order rectified to show that she had said it was to be half a day because then the lawyer in the Administrative Court Office would not have listed it for an hour? Can you find out why that was --
MR MISHCON: My Lord, of course.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: And let me know in due course because if what you are saying is right and that is what she did direct, it should have been in the order and it would have been taken into account by the lawyer when he fixed this case.
MR MISHCON: My Lord, I will.
MR JUSTICE KEITH: Thank you very much.