UCL Faculty of Laws


In Person: Private Nuisance in the UK Supreme Court: Fearn v Tate [2023] UKSC 4

13 March 2023, 6:15 pm–7:30 pm

Tate Gallery

An in-person only event organised by the UCL Private Law Group

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Gideon Schreier Lecture Theatre, UCL Laws
Bentham House, Endsleigh Gardens

About this talk

The UK Supreme Court’s recent decision in Fearn v Board of Trustees of the Tate Gallery [2023] UKSC 4 is a landmark ruling in the law of private nuisance. It has generated considerable interest already and is sure to be the subject of debate for many years to come. To discuss the judgment and its significance, the UCL Private Law Group hosted a special panel event. We were joined by three experts in the field:

  • Tom Weekes KC (who acted as lead counsel for the claimants),
  • Professor Donal Nolan (Oxford) and
  • Dr Vicki Ball (KCL).
  • CHAIR: Jeevan Hariharan, Lecturer in Private Law at Queen Mary University of London



Donal Nolan is Professor of Private Law in the University of Oxford and Francis Reynolds and Clarendon Fellow and Tutor in Law at Worcester College, Oxford. His research is focused primarily on the law of tort, and in particular the law of negligence, the law of private nuisance and the interface between tort law and public law. He is a co-author of Winfield & Jolowicz on Tort and Lunney & Oliphant’s Tort Law: Text and Materials. Read more about Donal
Tom Weekes KC is a property barrister at Landmark Chambers.  In this year’s Chambers & Partners he was described as “undoubtedly one of the leading property barristers in the country” and “the person clients go to when they have a ridiculously complex case”.  His recent cases have included Fearn v Tate Trustees [2023] UKSC 4 (succeeded in the Supreme Court in establishing that a viewing gallery was a nuisance) and Bath Rugby Ltd v Greenwood [2023] 1 P&CR 6 (succeeded in the Court of Appeal in establishing that Bath Rugby’s ground not subject to restrictive covenants).  Tom is the author of Property Notices (LexisNexis, 2021, 3rd ed) and the co-author of Rights of Light: The Modern Law (Jordans, 2015, 3rd ed). Read more about Tom
Dr Vicki Ball is a Lecturer of Private Law. Her main research area is the intersection between Property Law and Tort Law, focusing predominantly on the torts of conversion and private nuisance. She joined The Dickson Poon School of Law in September 2020 after completing her PhD at the University of Leicester which explored the implications of protecting property interests through tortious mechanisms. Read more about Vicki
The event was chaired by Jeevan Hariharan, Lecturer in Private Law at Queen Mary University of London. Jeevan researches and teaches in the areas of private law, legal theory and media law, with a particular focus on tort law and privacy. He recently submitted his PhD at UCL, supported by a Faculty of Laws Research Scholarship, on the protection of ‘physical privacy’ under English law. Read more about Jeevan

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