Monday, 4 April 2016

Mr Fidler’s castle comes down


The BBC reported on Thursday that Mr Fidler has begun to demolish the house he built in the Green Belt, in order to comply with the High Court injunction requiring him to do this by early June. According to the BBC, Mr Fidler has now confirmed that demolition has begun, after initially denying this.

UPDATE: (6 June). Today’s the day. Mr Fidler had to comply with the court order by today’s deadline, or face jail. In fact, it had become clear last week that demolition was already well advanced. At this morning’s scheduled hearing, the council itself asked the judge to give Mr Fidler more time to complete the demolition and clear the site. Today’s hearing (which the judge had fixed when the matter was last before him) was therefore adjourned for four weeks to give Mr Fidler time to finish the job.

© MARTIN H GOODALL

2 comments:

VKP said...

Hello Martin,
I had heard that Mr.Fidler claimed to have sold the property -- am was wondering how a potential enforcement could be "enforced" on a property no longer owned by him?

Martin H Goodall LARTPI said...

Mr Fidler tried to run the argument that he had sold the property when he was last before the Court, but the judge dismissed this as a sham. I haven’t got time to go into the details of section 179, but in any event Mr Fidler’s suspended jail sentence was for the ‘civil’ offence of contempt of court, as a result of his failure to obey a High Court injunction (granted under section 187B) to pull his house down. That sentence will take effect if the house has not been completely demolished, and the debris removed from the site, by early next month. The judge indicated that failure to comply by the date he has set could result in the sentence being increased. My recollection is that the judge set a hearing date in June to review the position at that time, so we may hear more of this in the near future – either that there has been full compliance with the injunction, or that Mr Fidler is still in breach of the terms of the injunction, and the judge will then proceed accordingly.