Reducing costs for landowner following scrap metal yard closure

Paul was instructed on a direct access basis by the owner of land being used as an unlicensed scrap metal yard; the Council having served a Closure Notice (under the Scrap Metal Dealers Act 2013 which was not complied with and then issuing a complaint for a Closure Order.

The Council relied on evidence relating to the continued use of the yard following the service of the Notice and of the Complaint and the Court made a Closure Order following a hearing which the landowner was unable to attend as he was out of the country.

The matter was listed for a further hearing to determine whether the landowner should make a “payment in” to the court in respect of the “clean-up costs” of the site, initially estimated by the council to be in excess of £100,000, and of the costs of the proceedings, in the sum of £27,500.

A settlement was negotiated whereby the Council accepted an agreed sum of £20,000 in costs, without any “payment in”.