Chiswick-based brewery Fuller's has received a £2,200 penalty for running an unlicensed "house share" in Kensington.

Fuller Smith & Turner Plc admitted to a House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) breach and was fined £200 and ordered to pay costs of £2,000 at Westminster Magistrates' Court on Wednesday May 31.

The court was told the council had no record of an application for a HMO licence being made by the company for 23a Edwardes Square.

The property comprises of The Scarsdale Tavern, a self-contained first floor flat for the managers and a second floor five bedsit room with shared kitchen and bathroom facilities.

Council officers from Kensington and Chelsea Council were granted a warrant of entry for the premises which was inspected on July 6, 2016.

During the inspection, six of seven people living at the bedsit were present and able to provide confirmation of their occupation.

This confirmed the property was an unlicensed HMO contrary to Section 72(1) of the Housing Act 2004.

The court heard the error was an oversight on the company's part and Fuller's has since applied for a licence.


In mitigation, Mr David Lintott, for Fuller Smith & Turner, told Senior District Judge Arbuthnot that the company was very reputable and had numerous public houses.

Mr Lintott said the company has now employed a dedicated person who is an expert in HMOs.

Imposing a fine of £200 Judge Arbuthnot said: “They are clearly a reputable company and it has somehow fallen through the net and wasn’t quite under their control.

"I want to order costs so there will be a nominal fine as they appear to have learnt their lesson.”

A HMO - sometimes called a "house share" - is a property rented out by at least three people who form more than one household/family but have shared use of facilities like the bathroom and kitchen.

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