8. The Cordelia [1909] P 27

Significance of the phrase “regular turn”

The facts

The vessel was chartered to proceed to the Nob or Topsham Quay, as ordered on arrival, and deliver a cargo of 180 tons of phosphate in regular turn with other sea going vessels at the average rate of 30 tons per weather working day.

The vessel arrived at the Nob and berthed but was kept waiting for a number of days while another vessel was discharged.

The owners claimed demurrage while the charterers argued that the phrase “in regular turn” signified that laytime would only commence once there were no other vessels ahead in the queue.

Findings

The judge of the City Court of London held that the parties did not intend laytime to commence before the vessel was first in the queue.

His decision was endorsed by the Divisional Court (Sir Gorrell Barnes P and Bargrave Deane J)

Commentary

Sir Gorrell Barnes’ judgment consists only of a cryptic affirmation of the the City Court.

 

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