But if its scope is wider, then two points must be considered. because the fact that X has not received the money will generally cause no loss to A: he admits that there may be cases where A would suffer damage if X did not receive the money but says that the present is not such a case. Lord Reid Lord Reid Lord Hodson Lord Guest Lord Pearce Lord Upjohn my lords, Before 1962 the Respondent’s deceased husband carried on business as a coal merchant. 396, 407. But if legislation is probable at any early date I would not deal with it in a case where that is not essential. The respondent's second argument is that she is entitled in her capacity of administratrix of her deceased husband's estate to enforce the provision of the agreement for the benefit of herself in her personal capacity, and that a proper way of enforcing that provision is to order specific performance. Mrs Beswick – wife) However, HOL gave 2 decisions: i. have suited Lord Denning's purposes in a number of contract cases. That, to my mind, is a startling and alarming doctrine, and a novelty, because I consider it to be an established rule of law that where a contract is made with A for the benefit of B, A can sue on the contract for the benefit of B, and recover all that B could have recovered if the contract had been made with B himself.'. His administratrix is now entitled to stand in his shoes and to sue in respect of the breach which has occurred since his death. v. BESWICK (A.P.) In the case of Beswick v Beswick,7 there would have been no … Offer & Acceptance, Certainty and Intention 2. Stupple v Royal Insurance Co Ltd  1 QB 50 Moreover, damages for breach would be a less appropriate remedy since the parties to the agreement were intending an annuity for a widow; and a lump sum of damages does not accord with this: and if (contrary to my view) the argument that a derisory sum of damages is all that can be obtained be right, the remedy of damages in this case is manifestly useless. He had no business premises. The respondent's second argument is that she is entitled in her capacity of administratrix of her deceased husband's estate to enforce the provision of the agreement for the benefit of herself in her personal capacity, and that a proper way of enforcing that provision is to order specific performance. Agbor . Mrs. Beswick was unsuccessful at trial and successful at appeal, which John Joseph Beswick appealed. Today the judicial precedent has been codified by statute in the United Kingdom, and In the Court of Appeal Sir Wilfrid Greene M.R. The respondent's first answer is that the common law has been radically altered by section 56 (1) of the Law of Property Act 1925, and that that section entitles her to sue in her personal capacity and recover the benefit provided for her in the agreement although she was not a party to it. He has refused to do so and he maintains that the respondent's only right is to sue him for damages for breach of his contract. c. 106) . It refers to any "agreement over or respecting land or other property." Beswick v Beswick  Ch 538 Tote Investors Ltd. v. Smoker  1 QB 509 Agbor . That appears to me to be a question of construction of the agreement read in light of all the circumstances which were known to the parties. Beswick v Beswick  AC 58 House of Lords The facts are stated in the judgement of Lord Reid. So, if X has no right, A can at any time grant a discharge to B or make some new contract with B. BESWICK (A.P.) The House of Lords, although not very enthusiastic about privity, refused to follow Lord Denning's attempt to abolish the doctrine in a famous case Beswick v Beswick 1968 AC 58: The doctrine came under strong attack by Lord Denning in various cases in the 1960's and 1970's. ...", "A person may take an immediate or other interest in land or other property, or the benefit of any condition, right of entry covenant or agreement over or respecting land or other property, although he may not be named as a party to the conveyance or other instrument: ...". He was one of six children; his older brother Reginald Denning later became a noted staff officer with the British Army, and his younger brother Norman Denning became Director of Naval Intelligence and Deputy Chief of the Defence Staff (Intelligence). Thus in 1861, Wightman, J. said ". correct incorrect House of Lords. In March 1962, old Peter Beswick and his wife were both over 70. The other Lord Justices agree in the result with Denning, but differ on reasoning. • House of Lords held that although doctrine of privity of contract still applied, Mrs Beswick, in her capacity as Mr Beswick’s successor was entitled to specific performance. 104. Lord Denning based his contention that a third-party beneficiary could sue on a contract, by joining the promisee either as v. 4. The Right Honourable Alfred Thompson Denning, Baron Denning, OM, PC (23 January 1899 – 5 March 1999), most commonly referred to as Lord Denning, was a British barrister from Hampshire who became Master of the Rolls (the senior civil judge in the Court of Appeal of England and Wales). But more difficulty is introduced by the definition section of the Act of 1925 (section 205 ) which provides: "(1) In this Act unless the context otherwise requires, the following expressions have the meanings hereby assigned to them respectively, that is to say:- ... (xx) 'Property' includes any thing in action, and any interest in real or personal property.". Lord ReidLord HodsonLord GuestLord PearceLord Upjohn. In the first place, I do not accept the view that damages must be nominal. ... Lord Denning, MR's view, expressed in this case not for the first time, is that X could enforce this obligation. Read more about this topic: Beswick V Beswick, Judgment, “Behold now this vast city; a city of refuge, the mansion house of liberty, encompassed and surrounded with his protection; the shop of war hath not there more anvils and hammers waking, to fashion out the plates and instruments of armed justice in defence of beleaguered truth, than there be pens and hands there, sitting by their studious lamps, musing, searching, revolving new notions.”—John Milton (16081674), “O dark dark dark. On this assurance the Bill is then passed into law, no amendment being permissible. That would produce a just result, and, unless there is some technical objection, I am of opinion that specific performance ought to be ordered. A fiduciary duty to one's brothers is not something that need bind the hand of any man if he can satisfy the Court on the balance of probabilities that, through his actions, he would get some. All he had was a lorry, scales, and weights. The covenant was to maintain a riverbank that existed between the two parties' land. In the present case I think it clear that the parties to the agreement intended that the respondent should receive the weekly sums of Â£5 in her own behoof and should not be accountable to her deceased husband's estate for them. 396, 407. Alfred Thompson Denning, Baron Denning (23 January, 1899–6 March, 1999) was a British barrister from Hampshire who became Master of the Rolls (the senior civil judge in the Court of Appeal of England and Wales) and was generally well liked, both within the legal profession and outside it. Lord Reid Lord Reid Lord Hodson Lord Guest Lord Pearce Lord Upjohn my lords, Before 1962 the Respondent’s deceased husband carried on business as a coal merchant. Extensive alterations of the law were made at that time but it is necessary to examine with some care the way in which this was done. Tote Investors Ltd. v. Smoker  1 QB 509. It is true that a strong Law Revision Committee recommended so long ago as 1937 (Cmd. Lord Denning was a judge for 38 years, retiring at the age of 83 in 1982. But the view more commonly held in recent times has been that such a contract confers no right on X and that X could not sue for the £1,000. In Smith and Snipes Hall Farm Ltd v River Douglas Catchment Board Denning L.J., after stating his view that a third person can sue on a contract to which he is not a party, referred to section 56 as a clear statutory recognition of this principle, with the consequence that Miller's case was wrongly decided. BEswick v Beswick House of Lords disagreed with Lord Denning in the CA, that the law allowed third parties to sue to enforce benefits under a contract. He had no business premises. Holding that the section has such an effect would involve holding that the invariable practice of Parliament has been departed from per incuriam so that something has got into this consolidation Act which neither the draftsman nor Parliament can have intended to be there. An original party sold his land and the purchaser then leased the land to Smith. By agreement of 14th March, 1962, he assigned to his nephew the Appellant the assets of the business and the Appellant under- took […] A list by chronology with brief descriptions of each can be found here: List of cases involving Lord Denning Pages in category "Lord Denning cases" The following 78 pages are in this). For clarity I think it best to begin by considering a simple case where, in consideration of a sale by A to B, B agrees to pay the price of Â£1,000 to a third party X. That would produce a just result, and, unless there is some technical objection, I am of opinion that specific performance ought to be ordered. The facts are stated in the judgement of Lord Reid. The condition as to payment of an annuity to the widow personally was valid. Little was said in Beswick v. Beswickl about C's right to sue in equity, but by a marked tightening in judicial opinion, a trust will Simonds J. rejected an argument that section 56 enabled anyone to take advantage of a covenant if he could show that if the covenant were enforced it would redound to his advantage. Beswick v Beswick. The doctrine remains the general rule in English Law. damages. The language of section 56 is not at all what one would have expected if the intention had been to bring in all that the application of the definition would bring in. Then the first question appears to me to be whether the parties intended that X should receive the money simply as A's nominee so that he would hold the money for behoof of A and be accountable to him for it, or whether the parties intended that X should receive the money for his own behoof and be entitled to keep it. Contract law – Privity of contract – Specific performance. Beswick v Beswick. They all go into the dark,The vacant interstellar spaces, the vacant into the vacant,The captains, merchant bankers, eminent men of letters,The generous patrons of art, the statesmen and the rulers,Distinguished civil servants, chairmen of many committees,Industrial lords and petty contractors, all go into the dark....”—T.S. It was not argued that the law of England regards B's obligation as a nullity, and I have not observed in any of the authorities any suggestion that it would be a nullity. The interpretation of section 56 was not the main issue. 3 See State of Israel v. Lord Denning granted a temporary injunction, and years later wrote of "bad workers" (who joined the boycott) and "good workers" (who worked normally). He cannot sue B for the Â£1,000 because under the contract the money is not payable to him, and, if the contract were performed according to its terms, he would never have any right to get the money. (Thomas Stearns), “In the theater, while you recognized that you were looking at a house, it was a house in quotation marks. In 1980, during an appeal by the Birmingham Six (who were later acquitted So an agreement between A and B that A will use certain personal property for the benefit of X would be within the scope of the section, but an agreement that if A performs certain services for B, B will pay a sum to X would not be within the scope of the section. The House of Lords disagreed with Lord Denning in the Court of Appeal, that the law allowed third parties to sue to enforce benefits under a contract. It would mean that the appellant keeps the business which he bought and for which he has only paid a small part of the price which he agreed to pay. If so, it must have given them rights which they did not have without it. Kay, J, said in Hart v Hart: '... when an agreement for valuable consideration... has been partially performed, the court ought to do its utmost to carry out that agreement by a decree for specific performance.'. Beswick v Beswick  AC 58. Why should the estate be barred from exercising its full contractual rights merely because in doing so it secures justice for the widow who, by a mechanical defect of our law, is unable to assert her own rights? In Beswick v Beswick, the agreement was that Peter Beswick assign his business to his nephew in consideration of the nephew employing him for the rest of his life and then paying a weekly annuity to Mrs. Beswick. Ratio [ ] Lord Justice Denning said: ‘Old Peter Beswick was a coal merchant in Eccles, Lancashire. REASONABLE NOTICE OF TERMS It is a concept under standard form of contract. Lord Denning based his contention that a third-party beneficiary It so happens that the respondent is administratrix of the estate of her deceased husband and she sues both in that capacity and in her personal capacity. PB was in poor health and agreed with the defendant, his nephew, that he would transfer the trade and good will of his coal business to him on the basis that the nephew employed him as a consultant for the rest of his life and paid him for this. accepted that a third Beswick v. Beswick (1966), Eng.C.A.,  A.C. 58 — Denning allows a poor widow to reclaim the assets of her late husband when it was taken from her husband's nephew. said, in rejecting the same argument as Simonds J. had rejected: "Before he can enforce it he must be a person who falls within the scope and benefit of the covenant according to the true construction of the document in question.". Metropolitan Police Commissioner  1 WLR 703 Stupple v Royal Insurance Co Ltd  1 QB 50 Cory Lighterage Ltd v TGWU R v  Beswick v Beswick… In 1962 he wanted ... Lord Denning seems to regard the third party's right as based on a sort of implied assignment from the promisee. By agreement of 14th March, 1962, he assigned to his nephew the Prior in Beswick v Beswick, Master of the Rolls Lord Denning understood the Law of Property Act 1925 to attempt to oust the tenet, however, on offer, the House of Lords Judicial Committee, the court of definite intrigue, reprimanded his outrageous strict understanding and proclaimed the precept unblemished. Beswick v Beswick UKHL 2 is a landmark English contract law case on privity of contract and specific performance. So for the purposes of this case I shall proceed on the footing that the commonly accepted view is right.  Catherine Mac Millan, A Birthday Present for Lord Denning; The Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) Act, 1999, (2000) 63 MLR 721 at pp. The decision was clearly right. Reverting to my simple example the next question appears to me to be, where the intention was that X should keep the Â£1,000 as his own, what is the nature of B's obligation and who is entitled to enforce it? 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