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   Case summaries      Smeaton v Ilford Corporation

Smeaton v Ilford Corporation [1954] Ch 450

Sewerage from the defendant’s sewer overflowed into the claimant’s land causing damage. The court held there was no negligence or nuisance. Under s.31 Public Health Act 1936, the defendant was obliged to discharge their functions so as not to create a nuisance. The court held this to amount to an obligation or duty rather than a mere permission and therefore the defence of statutory authority applied and the defendant was not liable under Rylands v Fletcher.
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