Council answers toilet test

A case which could throw new light on the liability of landlords under the 1990 Environmental Protection Act is to be probed by the Law Lords. They have given leave for an appeal in the case, in which it is alleged that Birmingham City Council was guilty of breaching the act in respect of access to a WC in a residential council property. The Lords will be asked to decide whether, if access to the WC – which contains no washbasin and is only accessible via a kitchen – is capable of constituting a statutory nuisance within the meaning of section 79(1) (a) of the act. In April last year, West Midlands justices found the council guilty of a breach of the act, a decision which was upheld by the High Court last December.