CAVEAT

P&T MEMBERSHIP

The names portrayed below refer to people in their professional capacity and are openly available on the internet either by way of their websites or the P&T website https://www.partywalls.org.uk/club_structure They were also transmitted to me in unsolicited emails. It is obvious that, in P&T’s view Mr David Turner was promoting excellence in his approach to the matter.

Following a complaint by fellow P&T member David Turner I was summoned to a meting with Mr Stuart Birrell FRICS, apart from being director of Murray Birrell chartered surveyors of 128 Mount Street, Mayfair, London, W1K 8NU he is the and Shirley Waldron, Vice Chairman of the Pyramus & Thisbe Club National Council and is employed by Delva Patman Redler of Thavies Inn House, 3-4 Holborn Circus, London EC1N 2HA.

On 7th September 2018 I received the following from Mr Andrew Schofield BSc. FRICS, director of Schofield Surveyors chartered surveyors in his capacity as National and Branch secretary of P&T..

Dear Mr Kyson

Following the complaint made by David Turner and your meeting with representatives of the Club to discuss his concerns, a decision has been made not to invite you to renew your membership.  This is because you have failed to accept that your behaviour was inconsistent with that expected of a member, as outlined in the protocol, or to modify it in the future.

Pyramus & Thisbe is a Club and a Learned Society with the aim of promoting excellence in party wall practice, it is not a professional or trade organisation. Membership is by invitation and you are of course at liberty to re-apply in the future and to attend events organised by the Club as a guest.  Please make sure that you remove all reference to membership or association with the Club from any literature, including websites and electronic mail.

 Yours sincerely,

Andrew Schofield BSc FRICS

National & London Branch Secretary

The above actions were as a result of a complaint put to the P&T by Mr David Turner MRICS C.Build E FCABE FFPWS ACIArb MAE of David Turner Chartered Building Surveyors, 7 Spooners Drive, Park Street, St Albans, Hertfordshire AL2 2HX.

You will note that it clearly does not revoke my membership but informs me that I will not be invited to renew it.

This has been written out rather quickly and I will be elaborating on this later….

I must admit I was surprised and disappointed at the action taken by P&T, however, it has shed a new light on the approach taken by them and their views. I had to take ex parte action to enable the BO to commence work as he was about to lose his builder and I could make no sensical headway with the AOS so I served an ex parte Award in accordance with both sections 10(6)+(7) and with my AO’s full support - insistence would be more accurate.. I do not take such action lightly nor without first discussing the matter and procedure with my AO!

P&T’s actions condone David Turner MRICS C.Build E FCABE FFPWS ACIArb MAE ’s approach to party wall matters.

Despite not having a disciplinary procedure my details were soon removed from the P&T website and I was denied access. Is this in itself not a disciplinary action?

The complaint was upheld, the email informing me of this came from the National & London Branch Secretary Mr Andrew Schofield, therefore, as Ms Shirley Waldron Vice Chairman of the National Council and Stuart Birrell, then both the London & National committees are in agreement as to the correctness of the questions put to me.

I have not touched on the ‘do as we say not as we do’ element on this page as yet nor have I added any details on how a relatively high profile P&T member sought to use the third surveyor for punitive measures against me and tried to drag his appointing owner into a dispute for his own personal gain. I will elaborate on this in due course.


Party wall matter

I will elaborate on what happened and the events leading to my ex parte Award and why I believe P&T view that a notice day notice is a requirement irrespective of whether a ‘request’ has been served is wrong.

click here for my views of 10(6) + (7)


the meeting

Mr Turner complained to everyone including the P&T, subsequently with regard to my P&T membership I received the following from Mr Stuart Birrell FRICS, director of Murray Birrell chartered surveyors of 128 Mount Street, Mayfair, London, W1K 8NU

Dear Mr Kyson

Further to our telephone conversation, I am writing on behalf of the Pyramus & Thisbe Club.

A complaint has been received from David Turner regarding matters relating to 1st adjoining owner [name removed by LK]. A copy of the letter of complaint is attached. We have copious other documents which relate to this matter.

You will appreciate we are not a professional body and do not have a disciplinary procedure. We are a club and learned society, we exist to educate and promote good practice but we do expect members to behave in a manner befitting the club and comply with the Code of Protocol.

We would like to discuss the following with you: 

  1. Not negotiating meaningfully regarding suggested alterations to the draft award.

  2. Serving an ex parte award without giving notice under clauses 10(6) or 10(7) and not informing the other surveyor of your actions.

  3. Not engaging regarding suggested referral to third surveyor.

  4. Not providing complaints procedure when requested (RICS Regulation).

As such we would like to arrange a meeting to discuss the matter with you. It will be with myself in my capacity as a committee member of the London Branch, together with Shirley Waldron, Vice Chairman of the National Council. We would suggest the following dates; 22nd or 23rd August or 4th September pm or 5th or 6th September.  We will arrange for a room to be available in central London, probably at my Mayfair office.

Regards 

Stuart Birrell (for and on behalf of The Pyramus & Thisbe Club)

The meeting between myself, Mr Stuart Birrell and Ms Shirley Waldron B(Arch) Hons Dip. Arch RIBA of Delva Patman Redler of Thavies Inn House, 3-4 Holborn Circus, London EC1N 2HA in 2014 took place on 22nd August 2018 at 10:00.


I will be responding here in more detail but you only have to read the questions. Were the questions really written by P&T committee members telling someone else they are wrong? Mr Birrell & Ms Waldron, both committee members of the P&T were telling me I was wrong as I was in breach of questions put before me!

Personally, I find the questions themselves do not exactly instill one with confidence or that the authors of such questions are fully conversant in the Act and furthermore, are not what I would expect from the committee of a ‘learned society’. After all it is the London committee and the national and London branch secretary who condone the questions, otherwise they would not have upheld the complaint.

Just some of my reasons are given below to the questions raised by Mr Birrell and Ms Waldron. Bearing in mind they are both committee members of P&T a ‘learned society’ in the pursuit of excellence.

  1. Not negotiating meaningfully regarding suggested alterations to the draft award.

    1. I find it difficult to comprehend that a surveyor with the credentials MRICS C.Build E FCABE FFPWS ACIArb MAE would insist on the amendments as put forward by Mr David Turner, some of which will be highlighted above later, especially in regard to raising questions about ownership of the building owner’s property some 3 months after notice was served, which related to a completely different building.

  2. Serving an ex parte award without giving notice under clauses 10(6) or 10(7) and not informing the other surveyor of your actions.

    1. Where are ‘clauses’ 10(6) + (7) in the Act? the Act only refers to ‘sections’ and ‘subsections’. The Act is legislation, not a contract.

    2. Where in the Act is it a requirement for ‘giving notice’ under clauses (??) (6) +(7)? The Act clearly states under section 10(7) ‘…neglects to act effectively for a period of ten days beginning with the day on which either party or the surveyor of the other party serves a request on him…' Both Stuart Birrell and Shirley Waldron kept insisting that ‘request’ is ‘notice’, to the extent that when reading out to me that section of the Act Mr Birrell kept replacing ‘request’ with ‘notice’, and that there is a requirement to serve a 10 day notice irrespective of whether a request has been made. Furthermore, under 10(6) there is no requirement for such notice, neither Stuart Birrell nor Shirley Waldron could point to any relevant section of the Act supporting their view. I have elaborated more on this in my views on section 10(6) + (7).

    3. Neither Mr Birrell nor Ms Waldron could point me to any relevant sections of the Act relating to informing the ‘other surveyor’ of my actions. I did not inform the other surveyor because both sections 10(6) + (7) state ‘..and anything so done by him shall be as effectual as if he had been an agreed surveyor.’ The Award is not the property of the other surveyor and the dispute between the parties was resolved. If the owner receiving the ex parte Award chooses to, they can advise their surveyor accordingly. If they choose not to inform him, who am I to decide against their wishes.

    4. It is interesting to note that the Green Book 3rd Ed. does not support their statements in relation to s10(6)+(7), when I pointed this out, asking them for a copy of the Green Book, I was surprised to learn that Mr Birrell does not have a copy in his office! P&T committee members without a copy of the Green Book between them? I should have brought my own but had decided to leave it behind as I did not wish to carry books across London with me; after all I had been summoned to a meeting in Mr Birrell’s Mayfair office. I wrongly assumed he would have relative reference to books to support his accusations.

    5. On the basis that I did not also serve a 10-day notice Mr Birrell declared my ex parte Award ultra vires.

  3. Not engaging regarding suggested referral to third surveyor.

    1. email from Mr Turner on 7th November 2017

      Good Morning Mr Kyson,

      Thank you for the email.  

      I select Graham North as Third Surveyor.

    2. As stated above Mr Turner on 4th February 2017 Mr Turner’s suggested referral stated ‘Clearly, I do not think that you and I are going to see eye to eye on this and I think that the Third Surveyor will have to make the Award with one of us. I shall try to contact Andy Schofield shortly to move matters on.’ and following up with

      Andy Schofield is happy to make an Award with us. He suggested a meeting which the three of us attend, with a view to all three of us preparing the Award. Perhaps you would let me have your thoughts.

      My thoughts? I responded ‘Good morning David, Mr Schofield is not the Third Surveyor.’ Quite clearly I did engage.

    3. What kind of question is this? How can I engage in such matters when Mr Schofield was not the Third Surveyor?! Is asking the wrong Third Surveyor to enter into an Award acting effectively? Obviously P&T believe it is.

    4. Is there a requirement in the Act to engage with a suggested referral to the third surveyor? given that section 10(10) states all three or any two of the surveyors or section 10(11) either of the surveyors may call upon the third surveyor…’

  4. Not providing complaints procedure when requested (RICS Regulation).

    1. It should be noted that RICS rejected David Turner’s complaint in its entirety, quite correctly given their guidelines as stated below. However, Mr Stuart Birrell decided to uphold this complaint, as did Ms Shirley Waldon and Mr Andrew Schofield.

      1. Obviously P&T put themselves, or at least Mr Stuart Birrell, Ms Shirley Waldon and Mr Andrew Schofield do, above RICS. If we read the RICS guidelines

        Complaints - Find out how to make a complaint about RICS, or an RICS-regulated firm or professional’ at https://www.rics.org/uk/footer/contact-us/complaints/ you will see that stage one states

        There are some types of complaint where the firm’s CHP may not apply: for example, where a surveyor is acting as an expert witness in litigation, or in the UK, where a surveyor is acting in a matter relating to a party wall and the complaint falls within the areas of dispute which must be resolved under the party wall legislation.

        1. Neither Mr Stuart Birrell, Ms Shirley Waldon and Mr Andrew Schofield appear to agree with RICS and have gone off on a frolic in determining that RICS were wrong to reject David Turner’s complaint regarding CHP and have implemented punitive measures against me themselves.

        2. Mr David Turner is not a client of mine, the Award was not appealed, furthermore David Turner is seeking to enforce his fees in the County Court. Incidentally the fees were awarded to him by Graham North in an erroneous purported third surveyor award. David Turner did eventually make contact with the correct Third Surveyor, once I had advised him.

    2. I will be elaborating on this particular point as some quire interesting points have arisen since their decision, which point to it being paradoxical.

      1. I had not sought to make a complaint about any P&T member, however, I had asked for a copy of a Ms Shirley Waldon’s CHP. I did not receive a copy of her CHP, apparently she does not know what it is! ‘What is the protocol?’ is what she stated in an email to Mr Andrew Schofield, instead I received the following from Mr Andrew Schofield in his capacity as National Secretary of the P&T

        Dear Mr Kyson,

        If you wish to make a complaint about a member of the Club you are of course at liberty to do so. The procedure is that you write to the Chairman or Secretary of the members branch, describing your concerns and relating it to the protocol. The members branch will then decide whether there are grounds to look into the matter further and refer it to Club Management Team. The National Chairman will select a panel which will comprise a member of the MT, and usually individuals from the relevant branch and committee. Pyramus and Thisbe is a Club and Learned Society, membership is by way of invitation; it is not a professional or trade organisation and as such it does not have formal complaint or disciplinary procedures. The primary purpose of the organisation is that of education and this includes behaviour appropriate to an individual charged with determining disputes.

        Yours sincerely,

        Andrew Schofield BSc FRICS

        National & London Branch Secretary [verbatim]

      2. Apparently this informs me that there is no procedure to follow if you wish ask for a P&T member’s CHP, unless of course you’re asking for mine…. This response appears, once again, to be paradoxical. I never received a copy of Ms Waldon’s CHP. On this basis was David Turner correct in his procedure of asking me for of my CHP? should he have made the complaint directly to the committee instead? The letter from Mr Andrew Schofield clearly indicates that you cannot ask for a member’s CHP but instead you must raise a complaint with the Chairman or Secretary of the member’s branch. In essence David Turner should have just made his complaint to the Club management, which he did anyway, but on the basis of Mr Andew Schofield’s letter he should not have asked for my CHP. Draw your own conclusions, what is more bizarre is that the above correspondence clearly states Pyramus and Thisbe is a Club and Learned Society, membership is by way of invitation; it is not a professional or trade organisation and as such it does not have formal complaint or disciplinary procedures. Despite this statement and still currently a member my details have been removed from the P&T website and access to the website has also been revoked. Is this not taking disciplinary action?

      3. I quite clearly did provide David Turner with the procedure to follow if he wished to raise a complaint against me. The procedure can only be explained to someone and this is what I did, I explained the two step process as required by the Faculty of Party Wall Surveyors with whom we were both members and were bound by their Code of Conduct, which does not require the matter to be in writing. The CHP is a process of actions therefore, you can only the process to be followed which must then be instigated by the complainer. What I find somewhat bizarre is that I did explain the Complaints handling Procedure to David Turner and he successfully managed to raise his complaints! Success, it worked much more successfully than envisaged as David Turner raised the complaint with the FPWS, RICS, CIOB and P&T, as of course Mr Stuart Birrell is well aware of.