Michael Grant discusses the recent County Court appeal of Trecarrel House Limited v Rouncefiled, HHJ Carr, County Court sitting at Exeter, 13 February (unreported) Read more >
Tim Adkin successfully appealed to the Court of Appeal against the decision of the High Court arising from the failure of the trial judge to consider the operation of the two-stage burden of proof and also the quantum of damages in a claim of race discrimination against a police force. The Court considered the Presidential Guidance on injury to feelings.
This appeal concerned the discriminatory treatment of Bianca Durrant by Police Officers from the Avon & Somerset Constabulary.
In an earlier decision (Bianca Durrant v Chief Constable of Avon & Somerset Constabulary  EWCA Civ 1275) the Court of Appeal held that the trial judge had failed to operate the burden of proof provided by section 57ZA of the Race Relations Act 1976, with the result that an additional finding of the judge was found to be discriminatory. This finding was that the Appellant Ms Durrant had been denied toilet facilities during her arrest and detainment despite her repeated requests for this.
In this second decision, reassessing damages and taking account of the additional discriminatory act, the Court of Appeal increased the level of damages from £4,950 to £14,000. In doing so the Court also took account of two factors:
Comment – this appears to be the first authority to consider the Presidential Guidance on injury to feelings, and confirms that discretion may be used to apply the figures in this Guidance for cases presented before September 2017. This decision confirms, following Reid, that the process of seeking redress following discrimination may sound in the assessment of damages, including the litigation process itself.