A car sales company is suing Irish housebuilder Albany Homes for £3.7m for not buying a garage in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire.

Baylis (Gloucester) has filed a claim in the High Court against Albany’s subsidiary Belmont Homes over the Haines & Strange development site at Gloucester Road.

The claim says Belmont has failed to complete its contractual obligation to buy the garage. As a part of the deal Belmont was to give Baylis land at Albion Street to relocate the garage. Baylis said it has not received this land.

Baylis is asking the High Court to force Belmont to fulfil its contractual duty and awards damages for breaching the contract and compensation for the delay in completion.

But Belmont has hit back at the legal action saying it did not buy the land because it became aware of faults in parts of the property.

In a defence and counter claim Belmont said that part of the property, 20 Gloucester Place, was infected with dry rot and damp in the interior parts and structure of the building. It also said that the rendering to the front of the building had become cracked and the wall bowed to the extent that it presented a danger to the adjoining property.

Belmont said it had not been made aware of the problems with the property and the liabilities it might incur to the adjoining owner, the Highways Authority and the local council if it had to remedy the problems. A surveyors’ report said the building would have to be demolished.

It is asking the High Court to either rescind the purchase contracts or to say it is not bound by them. It is also asking for Baylis to repay the £495,000 deposit it paid for the land.

Belmont had been planning to build 161 flats, 3,200 sq ft of offices and 7,900 sq ft of shops and restaurants. The scheme would have included 40% affordable housing.

Both parties had not commented at the time of going to press.