Angelo Bellot as Personal Representative of Estate Robert S. Bellot (Deceased) "Nobaby Estates" Plaintiff/Appellant v Joseph ("Del") Alexander Defendant/Respondent [ECSC]

CourtEastern Caribbean Supreme Court
Docket NumberCivil Appeal No. 3 of 1969
JudgeLEWIS, C.J.
Judgment Date20 Mar 1970
JurisdictionCaribbean States
Neutral Citation[1970] ECSC J0320-1
[1970] ECSC J0320-1

IN THE COURT OF APPEAL

Civil Appeal No. 3 of 1969

Between:
Angelo Bellot as Personal Representative of Estate Robert S. Bellot (Deceased) "Nobaby Estates"
Plaintiff/Appellant
and
Joseph ("Del") Alexander
Defendant/Respondent

Appellant in person

Dr. N.J.O. Liverpool for respondent

LEWIS, C.J.
1

This appeal concerns the rental of a portion of land at Nobaby Estate. The appellant's father rented a portion of land, 4 acres in extent, to the respondent. There was no written contract. The question arose in court, when the plaintiff brought his action for rent, whether the rental at the commencement was 5 shillings or 10 shillings per annum. The plaintiff said it was 10 shillings, the defendant said it was 5 shillings. The magistrate accepted the evidence of the defendant and held that it was 5 shillings.

2

The question also arose as to whether at some stage, not specified, the appellant had increased the rental. The appellant had sent the respondent a statement of account some 14 or 15 days before he sued him, that is, on the first of December, 1969. The case was heard very promptly, on the 22nd of December. It seems to be the view of the appellant that by sending the respondent that statement of account he thereby notified the respondent that he was claiming at the increased rental set out in that statement. There was also evidence that at some time, neither party said when, the appellant claimed to increase the rental and the respondent refused.

3

It would seem from the evidence that the respondent was claiming that he had bought the land from the appellant's father and that he had lost his receipt. The magistrate heldquite properly that neither party had produced any written evidence in support of his case, and he accepted the evidence of the defendant that there had been no increase of rental. He gave judgment for the appellant on the basis of 5 shillings a year per acre in respect of 4 acres, that is, £1 per annum.

4

The grounds of appeal raise a question as to the admissibility of a document. The appellant tendered in evidence a form of a contract which he said he was giving his tenants. The magistrate refused to admit it in evidence. The appellant says that this was an error in law. As I have already pointed out to the appellant, the magistrate acted correctly, A mere form of a contract cannot serve in evidence as an actual contract entered into in writing between the parties, unless the parties consent.

5

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