Practice and Procedure


PUBLISHED October 17, 2003

The magistrates had not been entitled to hold that an appellant subject to a restraining order prohibiting him from going to certain premises, had breached the order in circumstances where the appellant had merely been in close proximity to the premises but had not entered them.Appeal by way of case stated against the decision of Bournemouth Magistrates' Court on 24 January 2003 to convict the appellant ('K') of breaches of a restraining order dated 2 July 2002. The restraining order prohibited K from going to the premises of a Somerfield supermarket. K had been sighted 20 metres away from the supermarket, 2 metres outside it and on another occasion was seen on the footpath outside the store. On appeal K argued that: (i) at no time had he actually entered the store; (ii) the words "going to the premises" could not include merely going near them; and (iii) accordingly, it had not been open to the magistrates to hold that he was in breach of the restraining order when he had only been within close proximity but had not entered the store.HELD: (1) The words "going to the premises" in the restraining order meant entering them. The magistrates had not been entitled to hold that they could be interpreted as including "going near" the premises. If the latter had been the intent of the order then the order would have been worded in that way. (2) Accordingly, K had not breached the terms of the restraining order.Appeal allowed.

[2003] EWHC 2526 (Admin)