As the plaintiff in Street v Mountford [1985] 1 AC 809, I read with interest Suzanne Gill’s article ‘Exclusive occupation’ in last week’s Gazette. In my own article ‘Coach and Horses Trip Cancelled? Rent Act Avoidance after Street v Mountford’ (The Conveyancer and Property Lawyer, Sept-Oct 1985), I referred to the Court of Appeal decisions of the late 1970s which appeared to confirm a shift of emphasis from status to contract, with the ultimate test being one of intention. 

Watts v Stewart [2016] EWCA Civ 1247 emphasises that the true intention of the parties remains a significant factor in arriving at the decision as to whether the arrangement in question is a legal tenancy or a mere contractual licence.

Roger Street, Locum Solicitor, Christchurch