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Landlords pursue judicial review over selective licensing scheme in Somerset

A group of landlords in Somerset have contacted solicitors with a view to bringing a judicial review challenge over the proposed introduction of a selective licensing scheme in Weston super Mare.

The recently-formed Somerset Property Network said it planned to prepare evidence for its case for review by the law firm and counsel, who appeared in the successful challenge against a selective licensing scheme put forward by the London Borough of Enfield.

Writing on the Network’s forum, Paul Routledge said: “The good news is that early indications from them is that they certainly believe that we may have grounds because they have not given strict proof to one of the six criteria required to selective license an area but of course they will not give a full review and opinion of the case until they have seen it all.”

Calling on members of the network for funding, Routledge said that to consider and build the case to put forward for a judicial review, the cost for the solicitors/barristers/legal fees and disbursements would be around £12-£15,000 (plus VAT).

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It would then cost approximately £20-£25,000 to go ahead with the second part of the judicial review, “although once they realise we are serious we may not need to raise the second part as we can negotiate with the council on the presentation of our case”.

Routledge added: “If we do this, it will give us the opportunity to prove to the council that we mean business and hopefully, once we initiate this, we may get them to reconsider this atrocious licensing scheme.”

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