Legal Principles and Key Points
- In the case of Long v Gowlett 1923 2 Ch 177, it was held that there has to be diversity of either occupation or ownership between the dominate and servient lands for a right to pass as an easement according to S.62 LPA 1925.
Facts of the Case
- L owned a water mill and claimed a right of access across fields for the purpose of repairing the riverbank and cutting down weeds.
- The previous owners of both the water mill and the fields had done so before.
- L claimed that upon sale of the water mill, the right passed onto him under s.62 LPA 1925.
Issues in Long v Gowlett 1923 2 Ch 177
- Can an easement be implied?
Held by High Court
- No easement implied under S.62 PA 1925
- Here, it was discussed that where land is held in common ownership and is sold to two purchasers, a right of way will not be implied where there is no obvious visible path unless there was separation of occupation.
- “The plaintiff, as far as I can see, was forced into bringing the present proceedings by the broad and aggressive claims of right made by the defendant. And I have no reason to doubt that, when these proceedings are at an end, the plaintiff will allow the defendant, not as a matter of strict right, but as one of neighbourly courtesy, sufficient opportunity of clearing away weeds and repairing the bank along the plaintiff’s length of the river; and that, none the less, because the result of so doing would enure to the advantage of the plaintiff as well as of the defendant. I propose to grant a declaration and an injunction as claimed by heads 1 and 2 of the plaintiff’s claim; and I award him 40s. damages for the defendant’s trespass. The defendant must pay the plaintiff’s costs of the action to be taxed. The counterclaim is dismissed with costs” pg. 204.