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I assume the estate referred to is within an area where the local authorities have control over the formation of roads, and I think the vendor's liability would extend to forming and metalling the roads in accordance with a plan and specification that would meet their require
ARTHUR GARRARD, Fellow.
It partly depends on the regulation in force within the district in which the estate is situated. If there are any bye-laws regulating the construction of new roads, these bye-laws must be complied with.
It is bad economy to attempt to make roads unless they are thoroughly done. The vendor's interest will be best served by making . the roads with a good foundation of 8 in. to 12 in. hard core-slag, rough stone, &c., &c.; on this 6 in. of good rough road metal, 24 in. to 3 in. and 4 in. of metal to 2 in. gauge on this. All to be rolled, proper means of surface drainage being provided. The gutters should be kerbed and channelled. The covenant by which the purchasers are to contribute a certain sum per foot frontage will reduce the vendor's outlay, but how is that covenant re repairing and maintaining to be enforced? Who is to do the repairs? Who is to assess the amount? Who to collect it, and, in case of dispute, who is to take proceedings for the recovery of the sums apportioned ?
In course of time the presumption is that the purchasers of plots will endeavour to have these roads "taken over," and this will not be done unless and until the road authority is satisfied that they are properly made.
Under such covenants to repair and maintain, as stated in the question, the probabilities are that after the roads are made they will be allowed to go out of repair and become a thorough nuisance, until the sanitary authority steps in and exercises the powers under Sec. 150 P. H. Act, 1875, and calls upon the owners to make the roads good, after which they will be declared repairable by the inhabitants at large, thus putting a double charge on the purchasers, viz. :—
1. The sum covenanted to be paid.
2. The cost of making them good in future.
The most equitable way would be for the vendor to make them to satisfy the road authority now, and then get them "taken over." ROBT. GODFREY, Fellow.
Under the circumstances set forth, I am of opinion that the case would be met and the vendor's liability discharged if the roads on the estate were made as follows:
To dig out the ground over the whole surface of the carriageway of
the roads for a depth of sixteen inches, and the footways for a depth of eight inches, and cart surplus.
To form a foundation of hard core twelve inches deep in the carriageways and six inches deep in footways, and spread thereon four inches of gravel on the carriageways (in two coats of two inches each) and two inches of hoggin on the footways.
As may be seen, this is not by any means a complete specification; but having regard to the purchasers being under covenant to "contribute a certain sum per foot frontage," or, as is most likely the case, to pay directly or indirectly the whole cost of road-making, whatever it might amount to, I consider it sufficient; because, if the roads were to be properly made up, channels paved, footways flagged and kerbed, &c., prior to the erection of the buildings, not only would the purchasers' contribution per foot frontage be heavy, but by the time building operations were finished, much of the paving would be broken and kerb damaged, and considerable expenditure would be incurred to put ⚫ the roads in order again. Experience in the Metropolitan area has shown me that it is more economical for the owners to make up the roads only so far as I have indicated, and to complete the same after building operations have been brought to an end.
C. H. Lowe, Fellow.
It is somewhat difficult to answer the concluding part of the question without knowing the nature of the soil after the turf or other surface has been removed, since so much depends on the depth of the soil necessary to be removed, and the necessity of substituting hard core or other suitable material, which should be frequently rolled and consolidated before metalling and gravelling.
In some instances, such as in chalk subsoil formations, not much is necessary to be done beyond the proper formation as to gradients and sectional curves previous to the metalling, and on clay soils the burnt ballast affords good material for the primary formation.
My opinion is that, under the circumstances named, the vendors, having agreed to form and metal" the whole of the roads on the estate, should make the roads in proper form with hard core foundations, properly rolled and consolidated, and metalled with the most suitable stone of the locality to a depth of four inches, all stones to be properly broken so as to pass through a 3 in. ring.
W. BENNETT ROGERS, Fellow.
I think the "forming and metalling" would be taken to mean that the vendors are to make up the roads and footpaths of a proper shape, and in a manner reasonably sufficient to bear the traffic which may be expected in the neighbourhood.
One would think that probably the case would be met by not less than 15 in. to 18 in. thick of good material, including a surface of gravel or broken stone for the carriageway, and half such thickness for the footways.
It is not stated what is the certain sum per foot frontage which the purchasers are to contribute towards the cost of the roads. This might, possibly, give some indication of the class of road intended.
EDWD. O. WELLS, Professional Associate.
Reply to Query CLIII. (Vol. VI., p. 134).
QUIT RENTS-RECOVERY OF Arrears.
By Section 1 of 3 & 4 William IV., chap. 27, the word rent is declared to extend to all services and quits for which a distress may be made. Quit rents payable in respect of freehold lands were, before the passing of this Act, recoverable for an indefinite period; length of time did not raise the presumption in equity of an extinguishment. Under Section 34 of this Act the right to the rents is extinguished after the lapse of twenty years, excepting where the person entitled to the rents and profits is or has been under the following disabilities, infancy, coverture, lunacy, or absence beyond the seas, in either of which cases the period of recovery is extended to 40 years. The right of distraint has also been abolished. In order to test the legality of this case, give notice to the owner of the land of your desire to extinguish the manorial incident; at the ame time send a copy of the notice to the Land Office, with an indorsement thereon, stating when, upon whom, and how the notice was served. Quit rents are valued at 28 years' purchase.
GILBERT MURRAY, Fellow.
1. The "quit" rent, or "free" rents as they are usually called on customary freeholds, can be distrained for as in the case of any other rent in arrear.
2. Six years.
3. I cannot refer to Owen v. De Beauvoir, but it cannot be a recent case, I think. Twelve years' non-payment is sufficient to spoil the lord's right of recovery of the rents, but not of a "relief" on the next surrender, if the property could be got into court. If the courts have been abandoned, the relief may be also past recovery.
J. HENRY SABIN, Professional Associate.
Howitt v. Earl of Harrington (reported 22nd April, 1893, "Weekly Notes," 1893, page 66) decides that a quit rent, whether copyhold or freehold, becomes statute-barred after 12 years. In this case an action was successfully brought to restrain the lord from distraining for six years' quit rent, none having been paid for the last 15 years.
LEWIS WINCKWORTH, Associate.
Reply to Query CLIV. (Vol. VI., p. 134).
LANDLORD AND TENANT-NOTICE TO QUIT.
A Michaelmas tenancy from year to year cannot be legally determined by notice dated 28th March for 29th September, i.e., such notice must be given not later than March 25th.
F. K. MUNTON, Associate.
So far as I am aware the claim of the landlord in this case is quite new, and the custom relied on by the tenant well established and almost universally followed, i.e. the quarter days (whether Old Style or New Style is adopted in the leases or agreements) are the dates from or before which the required six months' notice should be given in any case, and so as to terminate on the same quarter day of the year from which the tenancy commenced.
This is so general a practice that until there is some well-established legal decision to the contrary, and I am not aware of any such, I should fear to act upon the landlord's contention in this case, and shall continue to follow the "custom" relied upon by the tenant.
Legal decisions do at times roughly disturb " traditional practice," as in the case of Williams v. Bull, a party-wall practice, but these occasions are, happily, of rare occurrence.
CHARLES K. BEDELLS, Fellow.
This question is fully answered in Woodfall's "Landlord and Tenant" (see 14th edition, pages 363 and 364). The whole passage is too long to quote, but the following words occur:-" A notice served on "the 26th of March to quit on the 29th of September then next is "insufficient, although there are more than 183 days between the 26th "of March and the 29th of September."
And in Redman and Lyon's "Law of Landlord and Tenant " ed., page 277) the following passage occurs:-"Unless by statute, agreement, or local custom, some other period of notice is fixed, it "must be given a half-year at least before the determination of the "tenancy. The half-year must not be merely six calendar months, "but, unless the tenancy commenced on one of the ordinary feast or quarter days, a full period of 182 days. If the tenancy commenced "on one of the ordinary feast or quarter days, the notice must be "from feast day to feast day, given on or before the quarter day next "but one before that on which it is to determine. Such a notice is "sufficient though less than a full half-year, and is required though "more than a full half-year. (See Morgan v. Davies, 3 C. P. D. 260 ; "26 W. R. 816.) "
P. F. TUCKETT, Professional Associate.
The notice is not sufficient. The exact point was decided in 1878, in a case of Morgan v. Davies, L. R., 3 C. P. D., p. 260, viz., that a notice given on 26th March was no use, as it must run for a customary half-year, although there were 183 days between the date of the service of the notice and its proposed expiration on the 29th September. LEWIS WINCKWORTH, Associate.
Reply to Query CLV. (Vol. VI., p. 135).
LANDLORD AND TENANT-RENT-DILAPIDATIONS.
I do not think the receipt of the last quarter's rent would necessarily be a bar to the landlord's claim for dilapidations. The rent may have been paid prior to the landlord having an opportunity of ascertaining by a survey whether grounds for a claim existed. At the same time it is usual for a landlord, on receiving possession of premises upon the expiration of a lease (as to which nothing is said in the question), to do so, subject to any claim for dilapidations; though I do not think taking possession would of itself, or even conjointly with the receipt of rent, interfere, in most cases, with his right of action upon the covenant. P. E. PILDITCH, Fellow.
I do not think the receipt wiil operate as a bar.
It is, however, I think, expedient to give such a receipt without prejudice to any claim for breach of covenants.
EDWD. O. WELLS, Professional Associate.
Reply to Query CLVI. (Vol. VI., p. 135).
WATER SUPPLY-CONSTANT SERVICE-NECESSITY FOR CISTERN.
In reply to enquiry, it is doubtful whether a water company can, in cases of constant supply, under the Metropolis Water Act, 1871, compel an owner to have a cistern other than the waste preventer. The Act does not positively specify cisterns to be used, but evidently contemplates them, for it defines "fittings" to include “ all pipes, cocks, cisterns, &c." And in the "Regulations" made under that Act, and confirmed by the Board of Trade on the 10th August, 1872 (a copy of which I enclose), section 13 specifies the "character of cisterns and ball-taps."
This, of course, only refers to London. It is possible that the company's private Act might give the power.
With regard to the latter part of the question, I should strongly advise owners in all cases to retain in use the existing cisterns, as in times of severe frost, or accident to the company's works, or shutting