A householder fed up with receiving flyers from a firm of estate agents has won his court battle to have them banned, in what could be a landmark ruling.
He successfully argued that there was no right to use his path to deliver the leaflets.
George Arkless, who already had a “No Flyers” notice on his front door, was so incensed by the leaflets coming through his letter box from local agents Kings Group that he applied to a court to have them stopped.
As a result, in what is believed to be the first case of its kind, the agent has been told it has no right of access to deliver the flyers.
Arkless, a retired teacher, won the case after arguing that the junk mail posed a security risk when he was away and the judge agreed that the flyers, which were often left hanging out of his letterbox, alerted people to the fact he was out.
He also successfully argued that people walking down his path to deliver the estate agent’s flyers were trespassing.
He said: “It’s one of those irritations of daily life that got to me on this occasion and I wondered if there was anything I could do about it. And there was.
“It’s a bit of a hammer to crack a nut but I’m so fed up with these people. I’ve got a notice on my door saying ‘No Flyers’ but they still come through anyway and that’s what irritated me.”
Arkless contacted the Kings Group estate and letting agency a year ago to complain about its leaflets left sticking out of his letterbox and asked them to make sure they were pushed through the door.
However, the deliveries continued as before, and he applied to Edmonton County Court in north London to ban the company from his home in Waltham Abbey, Essex.
Arkless said: “I emailed them and asked them to stop and they didn’t.
“Then I sent them an email which said you don’t have permission to use my footpath to my front door.”
Kings Group were ordered to pay £200 damages and £50 costs to Mr Arkless.
He said: “It’s fairly clear the law is on my side. Anyone who owns property has a right to restrict access to it.”
Kings Group boss Karl Knipe told EYE this morning: “I understand that a member of the public has made a claim against one of our franchisees because marketing leaflets were delivered to his house.
“I can’t comment on an individual court case but obviously Kings Group has no wish to distribute leaflets to people who don’t wish to receive them. As a company we are very much part of the local communities in which we operate.
“If it has not already happened, therefore, I will ensure that an apology is sent to the individual who has made this complaint.
“We immediately instructed the marketing company acting on our behalf to under no circumstances deliver anything to the said address and being a reputable and professional company who we have used for a long period of time and never have had any issues previously, expected our instructions to be carried out.
“Across the Kings Group we use only reputable and responsible distribution agents and we do our very best to target our advertising and marketing at people within the local community who may wish to use our services. I’m very sorry if, on this occasion, leaflets have been given to somebody who objected to receiving them.
“We will accordingly be reviewing our marketing promotion going forward.”