( 162 )
The following is a summary of the judgment in the case referredto in the above judgment:—
Defence of the realm—War—Exigencies of the Public Service —Crown—Royal prerogative—Right of Crown to take possession of land andbuildings without compensation—Defence Act, 2842 (5and 6 Viet., c. 94),a, 29—Defence of the Realm Consolidation Act, 2924 (5 Qeo. V,, c. 8), s 2,sub-sections 2 and 2, and regulations thereunder.
The Crown is not entitled as of right, either by virtue of its preroga-tive or under any statute, to take possession of the land or buildingsof a subject for administrative purposes in connection with the defenceof the realm without paying compensation for their use and occupation.
In May, 1916, the Crown purporting to act under the Defence of theRealm Regulations, took possession of a hotel for the purpose ofhousing the headquarters personnel of the Royal Flying Corps, anddenied the legal right of the owners to compensation. The ownersyielded up possession under protest and without prejudice to theirrights, and by a petition of right they asked for a declaration that theywere entitled to a rent for the use and occupation of the premises, or,in the alternative, that they were entitled to compensation under theDefence Act, 1842,—
Held, first, that the suppliants were not entitled to a rent for use andoccupation apart from statute, as there was no consensus on which tofound an implied contract; secondly, that regulation 2 of the Defenceof the Realm Regulations, issued under the Defence of the RealmConsolidation Act, 1914, when read with sub-section 2 of section 1 ofthe Act, conferred no new powers of acquiring land, but authorizedthe taking possession of land under the Defence Act, 1842, whileimpliedly suspending the restrictions imposed by that Act upon theacquisition and user of land ; that the Crown had no power to takepossession of the suppliants’ premises in. right of its prerogative .simplioiter; and that the suppliants were entitled to compensation inthe manner provided by the Act of 1842.
5 {1920) A. C. 508.