379. Mannai Investment Co Ltd v Eagle Star Life Assurance Co Ltd [1997] A.C. 749

Interpretation – notice to terminate lease not given strictly in terms of notice provision – House of Lords by 3 to 2 majority holding notice valid.

The facts

Premises were let for 10 years.  A provision for early termination read as follows:

‘The tenant may by serving not less than six months’ notice in writing on the landlord or its solicitors such notice to expire on the third anniversary of the term commencement date determine this lease and upon expiry of such notice this lease shall cease and determine and have no further effect. . . .’

A notice was served terminating the lease one day prior to the stipulated expiry date.

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