Management Corp of Grange Heights - Strata Title No 301 v Lee Tat Development Pte Ltd

JurisdictionSingapore
CourtHigh Court (Singapore)
JudgePunch Coomaraswamy J
Judgment Date05 December 1990
Neutral Citation[1990] SGHC 103
Citation[1990] SGHC 103
Subject MatterInterference of enjoyment,Rights of way,Land,Whether amalgamation of two lots extinguishes right,Right of way over servient tenement,Whether owners of dominant tenement entitled to interfere in right by erecting fence and gate,Easements
Defendant CounselJimmy Yap and Charles Lin (Donaldson & Burkinshaw)
Docket NumberOriginating Summons No 404 of 1989
Date05 December 1990
Published date19 September 2003
Plaintiff CounselRaj Singham and Ong Chee Kuan (Drew & Napier)

Cur Adv Vult

The plaintiffs are the management corporation of the land and premises known as Grange Heights which consist of three blocks of high-rise apartments, swimming pool, changing room, tennis court and garden, all of which are erected on the land known as lot 687 of Town Subdivision XXI. Lot 687 is an amalgamation of two separate lots, namely, lot 11-34 and lot 561. Roughly, on lot 111-34 stand the tennis court and the changing room, and on lot 561 stand the three blocks of apartments and the swimming pool.

The defendants are the owners of lot 111-33 of Town Subdivision XXI, which adjoins lot 111-34; the defendants are also owners of lot 111-32 which is next to lot 111-33 and abuts Grange Road. Adjoining these lots, namely, 111-34, 111-33 and 111-32, is lot 111-31 which is a long, narrow but irregular strip of land leading to Grange Road; it is, in effect, a private road providing access to these lots from Grange Road. Over lot 111-31 is a right of way vested by grants to the owners of lots 111-34, 111-33 and 111-32. I shall refer to lot 111-31 as the servient tenement. It is not in dispute that the defendants are not the owners of the se rvient tenement. The owners of the servient tenement used to be a company called Mutual Trading Ltd which had, in 1919 or thereabouts, gone into liquidation and, presumably, had been dissolved.

Before Grange Heights was developed, both lots 111-34 an d 561 were owned by Hong Leong Holdings Ltd in fee simple. In connection with the development Hong Leong Holdings Ltd applied for and obtained an amalgamation of these two lots into lot 687. Grange Heights was developed and completed sometime in 1976, and since its completion, the residents of Grange Heights have been using the servient tenement as a footpath for gaining access to and from Grange Road. This fact is not disputed by the defendants. Nor, it seems to me, was it in dispute that the defendants we re at all material times aware that the owners of lot 111-34 have a right of way over the servient tenement. Over the period, approximately between 1972 and 1975, Hong Leong Holdings Ltd and the defendants (formerly known as Collin Development (Pte) Ltd) were involved in litigation in respect of the right of way over the servient tenement: see [1976] 1 MLJ 164 ; [1976] 2 MLJ 149 .

On 25 April 1989, the defendants caused to be erected an iron gate a cross the Grange Road end of the servient tenement and a fence across the Grange Heights end thereof, thus...

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