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Fairhurst Ward Abbotts Ltd v Botes Building Ltd [2004] EWCA Civ 83

Transfer of undertakings - Unfair dismissal - Transfer of part of undertaking - Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 1981

27 February 2004

The appellant (F) appealed against a decision with the effect that the respondent employees, employed in part of an undertaking transferred to it, succeeded in their unfair dismissal claims against it. One of the employees (S) cross-appealed. A local authority (Southwark) entered into a contract with the first respondent (B) for building maintenance. Pursuant to that contract, the employees, then employed by Southwark, were transferred to B under the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 1981 (TUPE). Southwark later divided the borough into two areas and invited tenders. F was awarded the contract for one area. An issue arose as to whether the employees had been TUPE transferred from B to F. F was of the view that there was no transfer and refused to take on the employees. B took the opposite view and on that basis did not continue with the employees' contracts. The employees launched proceedings for unfair dismissal. The employment tribunal (the tribunal) hel...

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