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Govt sued for £500k

The Government is being sued for almost £500,000 after one of its departments left premises on Merseyside it had been leasing in a “dilapidated condition” requiring major repair works.

In a writ filed at the Technology and Construction Court in central London, investment trust Stockton Estates alleges the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government owes it £395,000 plus damages and interest over what it says is a tenancy breach at its St Anne’s House property in Bootle.

The claim states: “The defendants breached the covenants and delivered up the property in a dilapidated condition on the expiry of the lease. By reason thereof, the claimant has suffered loss and damage.”

The site was tenanted by the Secretary of State for the Environment.

In addition to the claim Stockton is asking the court for “further or other relief”, alleging the total cost of repair works will hit almost £475,000.

The London-based company says it will also lose thousands in income while the construction works are undertaken. In all, it alleges the total losses suffered will amount to £618,000.

In the writ, Stockton adds: “The cost of remedying all the breaches amounts to £412,551 plus 15 per cent for contractor’s overheads and profits.

“The claimant intends to do the works and will incur consequential expenses and losses amounting to £143,923.42 for contract administration, preparation of the schedule, and the loss of rent and the rating liability incurred whilst the works are being done.”

The government department, whose lease expired in 2006, had been a tenant at the property since June 1989.

The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government declined to comment.