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JOANNE WICKS QC

Call: 1990    QC: 2010

+44 (0)20 7306 0102jwicks@wilberforce.co.uk

Property

According to Chambers and Partners 2022, Joanne is the Star Individual QC for real estate litigation; she is also ranked as a Band 1 property silk in The Legal 500. Joanne was the winner of Real Estate Silk of the Year at both The Legal 500 UK Awards 2020 and the Chambers Bar Awards 2019. Chambers and Partners 2022 describes her as having a “fine reputation as a top real estate QC” and as “an excellent landlord and tenant silk with a forensic mind and unrivalled attention to detail.” It saysshe makes heavyweight work and issues seemingly uncomplicated and light.” Meanwhile, The Legal 500 notes that Joanne is “absolutely at the top of the game for property related disputes” and “in the very top echelon in this jurisdiction and always a first choice.”

Joanne’s practice encompasses all aspects of property law. She acts in disputes resolved through litigation, arbitration and expert determination and also advises transactional lawyers on title issues and the drafting of property contracts. Joanne takes instructions from surveyors and other professionals eligible to instruct the Bar directly.

Her property practice includes:

  • Representing the successful tenant in the Supreme Court in S Franses Ltd v The Cavendish Hotel (London) Ltd [2018] UKSC 62, a landmark judgment which establishes that a landlord cannot object to its business tenant’s application for a new tenancy on ground (f) – the redevelopment ground – with a scheme of works which it would not carry out if the tenant left voluntarily.
  • Acting for Canary Wharf Group in successfully resisting the claim by the European Medicines Agency that the Agency’s 25-year lease of premises in Canary Wharf would be frustrated when the UK left the EU (Canary Wharf (BP4) T1 Ltd v European Medicines Agency [2019] EWHC 335 (Ch)). Joanne was named ‘Lawyer of the Week’ in the Times when the judgment was handed down.
  • Appearing in the Court of Appeal in TFS Stores Ltd v Designer Retail Outlet (Mansfield) General Partner Ltd [2021] EWCA Civ 688 to argue about whether a business tenancy was validly contracted out of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954.
  • Acting in one of Estate Gazette’s Top 10 Cases of 2021: Capitol Park Leeds v Global Radio Services, [2021] EWCA Civ 995, in which the Court of Appeal considered conditional break clauses. 
  • Representing the developer of a super-prime development of luxury apartments in Grosvenor Square in proceedings about the termination of a sale and purchase agreement for the penthouse and whether it could retain a deposit and pre-payments of the purchase price: Lodha Developers 1 GSQ Ltd v 1GSQ1 Ltd [2020] EWHC 2356.
  • Appearing for the appellant in the Supreme Court in Duval v 11-13 Randolph Crescent Ltd [2020] AC 845, an important case concerning covenants which are found frequently in leases of residential blocks of flats. The Supreme Court held that landlords who agree with their lessees to enforce the covenants in other leases in the block limit their ability to licence structural alterations or other activities which would be a breach of covenant.
  • Successfully representing the appellant in Churston Golf Club v Haddock [2019] EWCA Civ 544 in which the Court of Appeal considered the anomalous “fencing easement” and whether such a right had been created by an express covenant to fence.
  • Obtaining the removal of restrictions on the land register to enable the financing of a major development at Canary Wharf to proceed: Quay House Admirals Way Land Ltd v Rockwell Properties Ltd [2022] EWHC 545.
  • Arguing successfully that the landlord of a £3m residential flat was acting unreasonably in withholding consent to assign: Gabb v Farrokhzad [2022] EWHC 212.