Published: 11 May, 2012
by PETER GRUNER
IN an extraordinary rebuff, Islington Council has been refused leave to appeal against a landmark decision to reduce leaseholder charges by a massive 60 per cent.
It follows an historic decision last month when seven Archway residents had bills reduced from £28,000 to £12,000 after a Leaseholder Valuation Tribunal ruled that much of the £2million work ordered for their estate was unnecessary.
The council immediately requested leave to have the decision overturned amid concern that it might open a floodgate for other leaseholders to appeal against their fees.
But this week, in a letter to the seven residents on the Tremlett Estate, an LVT case officer wrote: “The tribunal has considered the application for leave to appeal and it has been refused.”
The council must decide whether they should now go to the next level of authority, the Lands Tribunal.
One leaseholder, Judy Granville, 61, a retired secretary, said she was delighted by the decision that the council has been refused leave to appeal by the LVT. “The tribunal panel obviously thought we had a just case and the council should now accept its decision.”
Dr Brian Potter, who chairs the Islington Leaseholders Association, said that rather than waste a fortune in legal fees to appeal, the council should acknowledge that many residents are being overcharged.
In the case, the now-defunct housing agency, Homes for Islington, were accused of looking at the worst example of lack of repair and applying it to the entire estate.