After having lost in the lower tribunal and in the upper tribunal, been declined an appeal and a postponement pending a judicial review, and then been injuncted to comply with the property tribunal ruling, the freeholder at Canary Riverside might have been expected to give up.
Instead, John Christodoulou is heading back to court seeking a judicial review into the court ruling.
This time he is represented by Ranjit Bhose QC, having dispensed with the services of landlord and tenant barrister Justin Bates.
Mr Christodoulou, who describes himself as a property “billionaire”, clearly feels that justice has not been done and he has the resources to fight on.
At stake is the future management of Canary Riverside, one of Dockland’s most expensive riverside sites including 325 flats, a five-star hotel and luxury gym.
The property tribunal appointed property management veteran Alan Coates to manage the site in a ruling published in September.
It was Mr Coates, the former MD of HML Andertons, who sought and obtained an injunction in October to obtain on-site co-operation so that he could manage the site to which a court had appointed him.
Mr Christodoulou’s other prime site in Docklands, West India Quay, has also witnessed acrimonious disputes with the leaseholders.
Their application for a recognised tenants’ association was resisted by Mr Christodoulou in an afternoon showdown in the property tribunal in March 2014 (date of decision: May 14 2014).
The freeholder ran up costs of £74,500 for a QC, legal team and professional witnesses, but lost the case.
The ruling can be read here[pro_ad_display_adzone id=”11023″]
Surely this chap must have breached the lease in some way for a Tribunal to appoint a property manager to manage the site? I should be most interested if Alison Mooney would give her view as to whether he should forfeit the site? She was ferociously adamant in her post on ‘Forfeiture’ August 2016 that leaseholders should adhere to the lease or forfeit their property. It was said that ” Leaseholders have obligations as well as rights”. So do Freeholders. The same rules apply!
“After having lost in the lower tribunal and in the upper tribunal, been declined an appeal and a postponement pending a judicial review, and then been injuncted to comply with the property tribunal ruling, the freeholder at Canary Riverside might have been expected to give up …”
If this paragraph proves anything, it is that the Property Tribunal is not afforded the respect of an official court.
Having ‘won’ at Tribunal ourselves as leaseholders, we found that our Freeholder simply ignored the ruling.
Left with the spectre of yet another long and legally expensive battle ahead of us to apply to the court to impel the freeholder to comply to the ruling, we were the ones who gave up!
These successes at tribunal are nothing but hollow victories for leaseholders and the Tribunal themselves are little more than an advisory service.
Unless you’re prepared to lose your shirt or have bottomless pockets to fight these freehold giants, you’re in for a whole lot of misery.
Vivienne, surely if your Freeholder ignored the ruling then the leaseholders in return could ignore the Freeholder and his/ her demands, ( Talk to a lawyer) The freeholder relies on the leaseholder ‘ giving up’. They bully and intimidate by sending nonsense ‘lawyers’ letters that are not worth the paper they are written on. The chances are that Christodulou will lose again but does not seem keen to give up his cash cow so easily.
Get all the leaseholders together and agree not to give into your freeholders demands which I am sure are excessive. Take heart, read the LVT ruling of County Estate Management ( manager agents) from 2011. It was so damning that the ‘Management’ company felt it necessary to change its name. The leaseholders gave them a bloody nose and were paid back the money that had ripped off them by this company. DRAIN THE SWAMP!!!