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Wesley Potterton

Property and Social Housing

BSB Barristers’ Register

Possession Claims

Wesley regularly represents Private and Social Landlords in their possession claims from first hearing to trial. He often deals with complex multi-day trials, involving issues of mental capacity, the Equality Act 2010, tenancy fraud and/or serious anti-social behaviour. 

Wesley assists with all manner of cases including:

  • housing fraud, including obtaining possession, seeking unlawful profit orders and criminal prosecution.  
  • contested succession of Secure and Assured Tenancies, as well as issues of none- occupation “two home cases”. 
  • disrepair/ Fitness for Human habitation counterclaims 
  • trespass – unauthorised occupiers and encampments  

Wesley represents a Ministry of Justice-approved Bail Hostel provider in their excluded licence possession claims.

Wesley also has a busy paperwork practice: drafting court pleadings, providing oral and written advice and regularly contributes to Chambers’ blog on housing law updates and provides to Housing Officers and local authority lawyers on all aspects of possession claims.

Civil injunctions & Committal Applications

Wesley regularly attends applications for injunctions (including exclusion orders) both with and without notice from the first hearing to contested trial.

Wesley provides advice on the scope and terms of injunctions, issues of mental capacity, and the interplay between injunctions and possession proceedings. 

Wesley frequently represents Local Authorities and Social Landlords at committal hearings from first appearance to contested trials. He has an in-depth understanding of the complex procedural requirements for committal proceedings and is an experienced trial advocate.

Disrepair & Fitness for Human Habitation

Wesley has a busy disrepair practice attending fast-track disrepair trials on behalf of Local Authorities and Social Landlords. This often involves complex repair issues, vulnerable tenants and issues surrounding lack of notice and access to undertake works.

Wesley is able to advise and assist throughout the entire process from pre-action correspondence to the final contested trial. He regularly drafts defences (including counterclaims), applications including to strike out the claim, and provides advice on liability, quantum and legal costs.

Wesley has also considered the interlinked obligations of the intermediate and superior landlord, and drafted Part 20 additional claims against the superior landlords for failures to comply with their obligations where appropriate.

Wesley provides training on behalf of Local Authorities and Social Landlords on the law surrounding disrepair and fitness for human habitation claims and best practice.


N v H – Exclusion Order from home obtained on an ex-parte basis in a hearing in front of a Circuit Judge as a result of serious acts of violence.

S v B –Successfully secured outright possession for the local authority after a 1-day trial before a Circuit Judge, on the basis of the Defendant’s repeated anti-social and criminal behaviour.

W v H – Relief from sanctions obtained. Obtained relief from sanctions on behalf of the local authority and brought the claim back on track, after it had been struck out due to non-payment of court fees.

N v H – Successfully secured a possession order after legal argument. Secured possession after successfully countering the duty advisor’s submissions that the agreement was a tenancy rather than a licence, the notice to quit was defective and it had not been properly served. Secured possession in 14 days despite the Defendant seeking 42 days to vacate.

B v T – Defendant remanded in custody in committal proceedings during the adjournment to obtain legal advice. This provided peace of mind for his elderly neighbour whom he had threatened and at the adjourned hearing (with legal representation) the Defendant ultimately surrendered his tenancy and an exclusion order was granted preventing him from entering the area.

B v B – Defendant remanded in custody for multiple proven breaches of the civil injunction following a contested breach trial with numerous witnesses called by the Council.

E v M –Persuaded the Judge to strike out the tenant’s claim for disrepair. The Court had previously provided directions for trial despite the tenant’s own expert evidence not supporting any claim for disrepair. With reference to the law and the landlord’s updated expert report the Judge was persuaded to strike out the claim.

B v C –Persuaded judge to set aside default judgment entered against the local authority and award its costs of the application despite the local authority’s oversight in missing the claim form. Complex legal argument based on the erroneous manner in which the tenants’ solicitors had obtained default judgment.

S v H –Represented and advised tenants in a tenancy deposit and disrepair counterclaim to final trial. Following a one-day trial obtained substantial damages and legal costs for the tenants, and beat the tenants’ Part 36 offer.


Wesley is an experienced trial advocate, who regularly attends fast track trials on behalf of individuals and businesses. He is able to assist on a direct access basis. 

Wesley also provides written advice on prospects and quantum of claims. He often assists with settlement negotiations and represents clients at mediations. 

In personal injury cases Wesley assists with infant approvals, Stage 3 disposal hearings and small and fast track trials. He has particular expertise in the law and issues surrounding credit hire.


O v N (On Appeal) -Successfully represented parking firm on an Appeal against a District Judge’s decision to strike out the parking claim on the papers as an abuse of process. Strike out decision reversed and claim remitted for a trial on the merits.

T v H –Successfully represented Defendant in road traffic small claims trial despite his admission that he had improperly parked his car close to a junction.


Wesley is an experienced member of the Employment team. He regularly represents Local Authorities in the Employment Tribunal in a wide variety of cases from unfair dismissal claims to more complex discrimination and whistleblowing claims.

Wesley also provides advice on liability, quantum and settlement. He has represented clients at judicial mediation hearings achieving positive outcomes. He regularly drafts ET3 grounds of resistance as well as counter-schedules of loss and other tribunal documentation. 

Wesley contributes to Chambers’ Employment Breakfast Seminar, previously providing a presentation on the issue of employment status in the ‘gig economy’.


E v M –Persuaded employment judge to dismiss claim against the Local Authority at a preliminary hearing. Claim dismissed against the Council on the basis the Claimant’s contract had been TUPE’d over to the second Respondent.

A v B (Parties Anonymised) -persuaded Judge to strike out Claimant’s claim against NHS Trust due to it being brought out of time.

W v P –Represented respondent local authority at 2-day unfair dismissal trial. The claim was dismissed in its entirety. 

G v S –Represented respondent local authority at preliminary hearing and trial. At the preliminary hearing the Judge struck out part of the Claimant’s claim as being brought out of time. At the subsequent 4-day trial the remainder of the claim was dismissed in its entirety.

Regulatory and Local Government

Wesley frequently prosecutes on behalf of local authorities on a range of matters from Education Act prosecutions to fraud. He specialises in criminal prosecutions in Housing cases including: unlawful subletting, unlawful eviction/ harassment and applying for full and partial Closure Orders. In these prosecutions he benefits from being an experienced Housing Lawyer and Criminal lawyer. 

Wesley has also prosecuted on behalf of trading standards in respect of Rouge Traders and in respect of the sale of counterfeit and dangerous cigarettes.

Wesley also represents police forces for various applications including domestic violence and anti-social behaviour.

Wesley is also experienced both attending court and advising Councils on unauthorised traveller encampments.


R v C – represented local authority with successful fraud prosecution against a rogue trader, which led to a suspended prison sentence. 

R v B – fly-tipping –secured forfeiture of the Defendant’s flat-bed van on conviction.

R v S – successful prosecution of shop owner for possession of counterfeit and dangerous cigarettes after trial on all 12 charges. Cigarettes were hidden behind a plug socket and inside a cavity in a store-room door.

R v W – successfully prosecuted parent of aggravated non-attendance offence after trial


Wesley prosecutes and defends in the Crown Court, Magistrates’ Court and Youth Court.


R v T – Theft from employer. Acquittal secured. (Successfully defended care worker charged with stealing money from her recently deceased employer)

R v H – Assault by beating. Acquittal secured on the basis of technical legal argument.

R v M – Assault by beating. Acquittal secured for vulnerable client.

R v W – Youth Trial – legal argument – referral order secured for Robbery conviction.
Persuaded Judge that a Newton hearing was not required to determine whether the Defendant had used a knuckle duster in the robbery or not. Additional hearing avoided and referral order secured.

R v R – Sentence hearing, avoided custodial sentence for a burglary despite adverse Probation report. The Defendant had been given a deferred sentence to undertake a drug treatment programme, he had failed to comply with this and instead of attending the adjourned sentence hearing had been shoplifting instead. Wesley persuaded the Judge to give him one last chance to get treatment for his drug addiction.

R v H – Solicitor client acquitted of offences under the Child Support Act for failing to provide information about her client’s property conveyance after legal argument.

R v H – Client was a nurse of good character accused of assaulting a pub landlady. She was acquitted after a Magistrates’ Court trial

Direct Access

Wesley is qualified to accept instructions directly from members of the public across all his practice areas. 

Please contact the Clerking Team by email at if you would like to instruct him directly to provide advice, draft documents or represent you at a court hearing or trial.

For further information on Direct Access please take a look at the Direct Access page on our Chambers’ website.

For details of Wesley’s fixed prices for certain types of hearing see the link below: