Read the facts in the box below.

Box 1 Fact scenario

Ursula is training for a triathlon. The event will take place in local farmland owned by Tom Hopkins and will incorporate an open water swim in the River Nine.

A few weeks before the event, Ursula decides to complete the course as part of her training. Her husband John, teenage sons Daniel and Ethan and their dog Missy go with her, planning to support her at various points on the route.

John and the boys stop for a drink and snack at Café Tourmalet which is just off the route. Some renovation works are being carried out by Perry & Sons and the café has placed the following warning on the noticeboard at the entrance to the café.


Building renovations are currently underway to improve our café. We apologise for any inconvenience. Please take extra care when visiting the premises at this time.

Daniel needs to use the toilets which are downstairs. The handrail has been removed as part of the renovation works and Daniel slips while rushing down the stairs, breaking his smartphone.

Meanwhile, John has been asked by the café manager, Sam, to put Missy outside as she is getting in the way of customers.

John objects and an argument ensues before John takes Missy outside. Sam follows John outside and hits him hard in the face, breaking his nose.

Ursula knows nothing of these events and continues her training ‘run’ of the course. The gate to the river entrance is padlocked but it is only waist-height and Ursula climbs over it. Upon diving into the river, Ursula cuts her leg on a tree branch which has snapped off an overhanging tree and is submerged underwater. Her expensive triathlon suit is also ripped.

Discuss the claims in tort which Daniel, John and Ursula may be able to make.

to answer the above legal scenario question: you will need to explain the legal rules which form the basis of claims in occupiers liability and vicarious liability and consider any relevant defences. you can refer to jenny steele textbook (2014) Tort Law: text , cases, and materials , 3rd edn, oxford university press. and pearson law express tort law by emily finch and stefan fafinski, some online digital caselaw database for law cases and occupiers liability act 1957 and 1984. plus any textbooks relevant to question.

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