Lawyers for entrepreneur Simon Dolan have today filed over 1000 pages of legal documents with the High Court.
The proceedings are against Matt Hancock, the Secretary of State for Health & Social Care – whose name is on the lockdown laws – and Gavin Williamson, the Secretary of State for Education, who has presided over the closure of schools and universities.
The aim of the proceedings is to lift the ruinous lockdown, restore the civil liberties taken away from the public and allow schools, healthcare services and the economy to restart.
Due to its huge potential significance in legal and practical terms, the Court is being asked to deal with the matter urgently on a speeded up timetable. Mr Dolan hopes to have his case heard in the first week of June.
The former Entrepreneur of the Year, Dolan said: “My lawyers have this morning filed my application to the High Court for a Judicial Review of the Government’s lockdown regulations.
“At the heart of this historic case is the protection of freedom and liberty for 66 million people.
“We are challenging a catastrophic set of decisions which will leave an indelible print from a boot which has stamped on the nation’s freedoms and will blight the lives of generation after generation.
“Every day that the lockdown remains in place is one more day the country cannot afford – on any level.
“For those reasons and more, this is very possibly the most important case of our lifetime.
“The claim argues that the lockdown measures are unlawful because they breach the European Convention on Human Rights, that the five tests for terminating lockdown are too narrow, and the measures taken by Government are disproportionate.
“We are filing this claim as the Chancellor warns of a deep, unparalleled recession.
“The number of people furloughed or unemployed stands at 10 million people, and billions are being wiped off the economy with every passing day.
“Those lucky enough to have jobs left at the end of this crisis could see income tax increase by up to 10p in the pound.
“The government has spent £13,000 per household on bailout so far.
“Yet there was no scrutiny, debate or vote on the lockdown laws before they were implemented back in March.
“The policies are completely disproportionate to the harm they are supposed to be aimed at preventing.
“A judicial review is the only effective means of challenging what the Government is doing and holding them properly to account.
“Boris and his crew have sleepwalked into this mess and are taking the nation over the cliff edge with them.
“Yet people are voting with their feet against lockdown. Just look at the number of people out on the beaches and outside yesterday.
“In Britain today, grandparents cannot see their grandchildren, businesses cannot function and will go bust, and the measures remove the right to political protest – or even to go and get a haircut.
“We are also pushing for full disclosure on the minutes of SAGE meetings – people need to know the full details of the scientific advice that lead to the decisions that has caused so much damage to the country.
“It is my name on the claim form, but I sincerely believe this is a claim on behalf of so many businesses, individuals and families. It is a claim back by thousands of people from all over the country who have donated to the crowdfund campaign to help launch this legal action, many of whom have written messages saying they are parting with money they don’t really have because they believe so strongly about having their freedoms and livelihoods stolen from them.
“Unfortunately, due to the Government’s actions, life will not simply snap back into place like in the movies.
“It won’t be just about putting on a facemask and getting on with it like nothing has happened.
“That is the sad fact we must all live with and it is why this case is so important.”
The legal cased came about after lawyers for Simon Dolan wrote to the Government warning them that Mr Dolan would seek a judicial review of the Government’s lockdown laws, unless drastic changes were made to ease them and so prevent irreparable damage being done to the Country’s health, education, wellbeing and economy;
Dolan’s intention is to challenge the lawfulness of the lockdown measures in England. He claims they were introduced unlawfully and disproportionately by the Government against the whole population. His campaign is backed by over 4000 crowdfunding supporters from all walks of life. They have so far raised nearly £130,000.
In his legal action, Mr Dolan is claiming that the sweeping lockdown regulations introduced by the Government in England are “ultra vires” (i.e. the Govt did not have power to introduce them as they did). This is highly complex matter and revolves round the wording of the Public Health (control of Diseases) Act 1984.
He also challenges the interference in people’s human rights in a variety of areas including private and family life, education, freedom of assembly, right to liberty and enjoyment of property.
He disputes the lawfulness of the Government’s “five tests” for lifting the lockdown which do not appear to take adequate notice of the huge damage that is being done to millions of people and their livelihoods.
He questions the rationality of the latest rules which are so riddled with inconsistencies in what is lawful and what is not lawful. These bring the law into disrepute.
Finally, he also challenges the continued closure of schools with the devastating harm it is doing to the prospects and welfare of pupils, in the face of overwhelming evidence that children and young people are not susceptible to Covid-19
Mr Dolan is represented by Michael Gardner of Wedlake Bell LLP solicitors and by barristers Philip Havers QC and Francis Hoar.