Mrs Kane faces questions from Sarah O’Brien (barrister) and District Judge Woodburn in Wirral Council v Kane and Woodley (Fernbank Farm)
Wirral Council v Kane and Woodley (case 3BI05210)
Birkenhead County Court
13th February 2014
Court Room 1
Mrs Kane on the witness stand
Mrs Kane continued by saying that after her letter, she spoke to David Dickenson and told him she was going to hospital and that she wanted it all sorted before that.
Mrs Kane is cross-examined by Sarah O’Brien
District Judge Woodburn gave Sarah O’Brien (barrister for Wirral Council) an opportunity to cross-examine Mrs Kane. Sarah O’Brien asked Mrs Kane if she had said that she rang David Dickenson in May 2013 as Mrs Kane was concerned she had not heard from him? Mrs Kane replied “yes”.
Sarah O’Brien said something I couldn’t hear to which Mrs Kane replied that she’d been told that she’d hear from them [Wirral Council] about the new lease but she didn’t hear until 2012.
Wirral Council’s barrister asked Mrs Kane when she received the eviction notice had she read it? Mrs Kane answered yes. To clarify whether she was answering yes to receiving the notice or having read it District Judge Woodburn asked her if she’d read the eviction notice to which she answered that she had read the notice yes.
Miss O’Brien said that Mrs Kane had told David Dickenson she wanted to renew the lease on the Council’s terms, however that she was only prepared to renew on new terms. Mrs Kane explained she had asked him if he could help with the expenses as previously the legal fees had been reduced from £500 to £300. The only other term that she wanted changed was a rent increase of 2.5% and David Dickenson had told her he would make a site visit to discuss it.
Sarah O’Brien said that the letter sent sets out Mrs Kane’s terms which were not the same terms that were put forward by Wirral Council. Mrs Kane said that she wanted to renew the lease and had spoken to David Dickenson and told him that if he couldn’t do anything then to send the papers back to her. She had told David Dickenson that she wanted negotiations on the lease finished by the end of May and referred to an email from David Dickenson that stated that Mrs Kane had until May 31st.
The barrister for Wirral Council said that there was no reference in the defence to terms being agreed. Mrs Kane had that a “lot has gone missing”. Sarah O’Brien said it was a fact that terms (for the new lease) were suggested. District Judge Woodburn said that it was an important point if it’s said that Wirral Council accepted the terms of the new lease.
Mrs Kane referred to a telephone call. Sarah O’Brien asked her when the telephone call was? She answered towards the end of April. Mrs Kane said that she had been trying to get in touch with David Dickenson but all her called were being ignored. There had been no response to her letters and since 2012 David Dickenson had ignored her phone calls.
She had said that she had spoken with David Dickenson on the phone twice, but at all other times she had been told her was on site visits, in a meeting, that he would get back to her or that his father had died. Mrs Kane understood David Dickenson was a busy man but he was not answering her.
Sarah O’Brien said that she (Mrs Kane) didn’t get an answer to her letter to David Dickenson. She referred to page thirty-eight in the bundle and a reference to a phone call of 23rd May where it stated that Mrs Kane was awaiting a response (to her letter). Mrs Kane said that David Dickenson was ignoring her phone calls. Sarah O’Brien said that she didn’t contact David Dickenson as there was no reference in the earlier document.
Mrs Kane referred to emails which said to answer Mrs Kane’s phone calls and that this was in Wirral Council’s emails. Sarah O’Brien said that it was clear from the record of the phone call that at that point Mrs Kane hadn’t had a response (from David Dickenson). Mrs Kane said she had rung Mr. Dickenson and told him that they were willing to pay but if he can’t do it to send it back and that Mr. Dickenson knew that, she hadn’t been able to get in touch with Mr. Dickenson since. In 2012 she was told that Mr. Dickenson was at a funeral and that Peter Jones could take over.
Sarah O’Brien referred to the document containing the original defence and the point where Mrs Kane said that David Dickenson said “not to worry”. Mrs Kane said that at the beginning of May she couldn’t get in touch with David Dickenson and that he’d had the “shock of his life” when he answered the phone to her. She had asked him to send her an email if he could not do anything and to send the forms back, the public liability insurance receipt and the cheques. Mr. Dickenson had told her “not to worry” because he’d do it.
The barrister for Wirral Council asked her if in the same conversation that David Dickenson says he accepted the terms, to which Mrs Kane answered “yep”. Sarah O’Brien said that conversation was at the beginning of May and referred to something that referred to Mrs Kane phoning and saying she had had no response to her letter. Mrs Kane referred to an email that showed that David Dickenson knew about the deadline of the 31st May. Sarah O’Brien said she had no further questions for Mrs Kane.
District Judge Woodburn asks Mrs Kane questions
District Judge Woodburn referred to page eighteen and the eviction notice. He directed Mrs Kane to paragraph four which stated “If we cannot agree on all the terms of a new tenancy, either you or I may ask the court to order the grant of a new tenancy” and paragraph 5 which stated “If you wish to ask the court for a new tenancy you must do so by the date in paragraph 2” which was the 31st May 2013.
Mrs Kane said that she had spoken with Mr. Dickenson at the beginning of May to tell him and asked him about it and she’d asked Mrs Carman. When she’d asked Mrs Carman who was taking over Mrs Carman had answered Peter Jones. Mrs Kane said that she’d been told by Mr. Dickenson that if they were negotiating a new lease that she didn’t need to apply to the court. District Judge Woodburn said that Wirral Council hadn’t agreed anything and that there was no evidence of any agreement by Wirral Council.
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