The damages hearing into how much Strutt & Parker must pay for negligently advising the Earl of Malmesbury when negotiating leases on car-park land used by Bournemouth airport finished on Tuesday.

High Court judge Mr Justice Jack, is expected to hand down a judgment in the next three weeks awarding the Earl damages between £7m and £500,000.

The case follows an original £180m claim by the Earl after Strutt & Parker’s agent Ian Ashworth had not pushed hard enough when he negotiated a 24-year lease at a rent of £9,000 a year.


The damages are calculated as the difference between the correct value of the leases in 2002 and 2003 and the amount the Earl received following the negligent advice.

The alternative way of working out the damages was for the judge, which will be taken into consideration, is based on the amount that would have been made on the land up until 2026.

The Earl is arguing that the difference in value is £4m but, following the dispute, i9s now hoping this may be as high as £7m.

On Strutt & Parker’s evidence the amount could be as low as £500,000.

It is believed both sides are considering appeals in relation to the case – Strutt & Parker on its liability, and the Earl on how the damages are calculated.