Competition Law, Local Authorities and Commercial Property

19 May 2014 | by Ben Rayment

Martin Retail Group Limited v Crawley Borough Council, Central London County Court, Judgment of 24 December 2013. This recently published judgment decided in December 2013 should raise alarm bells for local authorities. A letting scheme which was designed to promote a ‘diverse and vibrant’ shopping parade for the benefit of the local community has been held to breach competition law. Tenants are likely to attempt to use this case as a precedent to upset similar letting schemes elsewhere and to argue against restrictive user clauses in leases and possibly even to obtain wider user clauses on lease renewal.