Conservatory firm loses lawsuit against EuroMillions winners
Colin and Christine Weir were being sued by York-based Oak Leaf Conservatories Limited, after pulling out of a building contract for work at their home in Scotland. According to the Daily Telegraph, they halted work on a £47,000 semi-circular garden room and £380,000 pool house, claiming they'd "lost all confidence" in the firm. Oak Leaf said it was £290,000 out of pocket as a result.
But in his judgement today, Justice Stuart-Smith said that because the Weirs lived in Scotland, the case shouldn't have been heard in the English courts.
"While I accept that the primary focus of Oak Leaf's business may be in England and that most of the business it had obtained historically has been in England, it is apparent from its websites and its overall activity that Oak Leaf was envisaging doing business with consumers domiciled in Scotland," he said.
"I therefore conclude that Oak Leaf pursues commercial activities in Scotland and directs its activities to Scotland. These proceedings may therefore only be brought against the Weirs in the courts of Scotland."
Oak Leaf can now start the process again in Scotland.
The Weirs won a record £161 million on the EuroMillions lottery in 2011. After their win, they said they'd have "so much fun" with the money. As well as buying their £850,000 house in Largs, North Ayrshire, they donated money to the Yes Scotland campaign and set up the Weir Foundation, a £5 million charitable trust that funds health, sport, cultural, recreational and animal welfare projects in Scotland. They paid for a false leg for a 13-year-old boy with cancer, and even gave £70,000 to their local golf club.
Lottery winners are frequently the target of lawsuits. Another was sued only two weeks ago - by his sister, who says she's entitled to a share of the winnings. And in July, members of a winning syndicate at a Merseyside recruitment firm were sued by a colleague who had been off sick on the day tickets were bought.