The conference is sponsored by Garden Court Chambers Garden Court Chambers logo


The conference will commence at 12.00 and close at 17.45. The current programme is as follows.
12.00   Welcome and introduction
Simon Mullings and Marina Sergides, Co Chairs of HLPA
12.10   Keynote presentation
Richard Blakeway
, Housing Ombudsman.
12.40   Panel discussion:
Chair: Thembi Fakoya-Sales, Mary Ward Legal Centre
John Boughton, author of Municipal Dreams: The Rise and Fall of Council Housing
Anna Minton, Writer, Journalist and Reader in Architecture, University of East London
Mushtaq Khan, Chief Executive, Housing Diversity Network and Coordinator, BME National
Karen Buck, MP for Westminster North
13.50   Lunch break


Parallel seminars session 1

Seminar 1: Getting the works done: Enforcement of works orders by tenants and of the HHSRS by local authorities
Chair: Radhika Shah, TV Edwards Solicitors
Eleanor Solomon, Anthony Gold Solicitors
Liz Webster, Group Manager for Environmental Health and Housing, North Lincolnshire Council and Consultant EHP on behalf of ARI Environmental Services
Content: Enforcement of works orders; prohibition orders and other enforcement notices in relation to HHSRS (Housing, Health and Safety Ratings System)

Seminar 2: Anti-social behaviour: Dealing with ASBIs, closure orders and committals from beginning to end (and possibly then some!)
Chair: Michael Marsh-Hyde, One Pump Court Chambers
Harriet Bosnyak, Shelter North East
Alice Irving, Doughty Street Chambers
Content: An update on ASBIs and committals and a look forward to the implementation of the CJC paper on ASBIs

Seminar 3: Domestic violence and housing
Chair: Angharad Monk, Garden Court Chambers
Justine Compton, Garden Court Chambers
Izzy Mulholland, Public Interest Law Centre
Content: The housing-related provisions of the Domestic Abuse Act 2021 and a practitioner’s guide to social housing transfers for survivors of domestic abuse

Seminar 4: Legal aid update and how to run a disrepair claim under a CFA
Chair: Chris Minnoch, CEO, Legal Aid Practitioners Group
Robert Damião, Legal Aid Agency
Sara Stephens, Anthony Gold Solicitors
Content: Tips on avoiding civil bill rejects; CCMS, POA claims; enhancement and appeals; using Conditional Fee Agreements (CFAs) to fund a housing conditions case

15:35   Media presentation: Lessons from Grenfell
Peter Apps
, Deputy Editor, Inside Housing in conversation with Caroline Brosnan, Russell-Cooke Solicitors
Q&A session with Andrew Brookes, Anthony Gold Solicitors
16.15   Break


Parallel seminars session 2

Seminar 5: Defending possession proceedings
Chair: Ian Greenidge, Mary Ward Legal Centre
Ann Bevington, Hopkin Murray Beskine Solicitors
Nick Bano, Garden Court Chambers
Content: Welfare Benefits and Possession Proceedings Update - discussing the various schemes for housing costs payments, with a focus on identifying benefits problems and developing strategies to address them when defending rent arrears possession proceedings
CPR 55.8: When is a Defence not a Defence? - when is a claim for possession genuinely disputed on grounds which appear to be substantial and what information do you need to present to the Judge hearing your case at first instance to avoid the claim being determined on a summary basis?

Seminar 6: Challenging housing conditions in asylum support and local authority accommodation for people with no recourse to public funds
Chair: Kathleen Cosgrove, Greater Manchester Law Centre
Simon Cox, Doughty Street Chambers
Lou Crisfield, Miles and Partners Solicitors
Content: Accommodation standards for people receiving asylum support or local authority accommodation under powers outside the Housing Act

Seminar 7: Opportunities for work in the Property Tribunal
Chair: Jim Shepherd, Doughty Street Chambers
Nik Nicol, One Pump Court Chambers
Gete Otiti, Citizens Advice, Southwark
Content: Service charges for leaseholders; the remedies the Tribunal can provide for housing conditions (RROs, financial penalties); leasehold disputes and dispute resolution (e.g. mediation)

Seminar 8: The main homeless duty: When is enough enough?
Chair: Robert Brown, Shelter Manchester
Zia Nabi, Doughty Street Chambers
Nina Patel, WTB Solicitors
Content: The nature of main homeless duty; what is relevant to relief?; complexities raised by disabled children in households; how much can a local authority rely on lack of resources to avoid relief; how to prepare the best case for court payment
17.45   Close
18.15   Live social event 
The Knights Templar, 95 Chancery Lane, Holborn, London WC2A 1DT