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R v Secretary of State for Wales, ex parte Kennedy [1996] 1 PLR 97

Factors taken into account when considering whether an item is a fixture; particularly in relation to listed buildings

Facts

The appellant was the owner of a Grade II listed building which was subject to a notice of removal in respect of a carillon clock and three bronze chandeliers without an application for consent. The appellant argued that the building inspector had taken into account an irrelevant consideration when considering that the ringing out of the clock’s bells across the countryside was part of the building’s history and was therefore relevant to the purpose of the annexation under the test for whether an item was a fixture or chattel under Berkley v Poulett [1997] 1 EGLR 86.

Issues

The issue in this context was the extent of factors that could be taken into account in relation to whether an item was a fixture of chattel.

Held

It was held that the ordinary test for establishing whether an item was a fixture or a chattel applied equally in respect of planning law as to any other consideration. The free-standing nature of the clock did not prevent it from being a fixture. There was no suggestion that the building inspector had taken into account an irrelevance on the purpose of the annexation and, even if this could be found, it would not have invalidated the decision. The purpose of the annexation can be relatively broadly drawn depending on the circumstances.


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