The building where MrKayeowns the first-floor flat and Ms Lees lives below
Mr Kaye — King Aelle in Vikings and Dr Jonathan Leroy in EastEnders — said he resorted to “camping out” on the upper floor of his maisonette, before renting the flat to students.
But Ms Lees’s behaviour continued when they moved in, the court heard. Tenant Alexandra Skinner, 19 at the time, said it left them in tears.
“The banging and shouting continued every single day,” she told the judge. “We spent the whole time in fear and Ms Lees’s whole manner was petrifying.” Mr Kaye added: “Not only has she made my life a total misery but she has also inflicted the same misery on all the previous occupiers, my tenants, the estate agents … This has been going on for over 10 years.”
Ms Lees, who wrote the Kumari trilogy of teen novels, was not legally represented and did not give evidence at the hearing of the civil harassment and nuisance claims.
Ruling on the case, Judge Roberts said Mr Kaye did “his level best to get along” with Ms Lees. The judge accepted she “would bang on the ceiling and shout” despite the fact Mr Kaye rarely had visitors and “did not make any unreasonable noise” if he did. “I accept his evidence that this banging and shouting occurred on a regular basis and that he stayed in his bedroom … as he was frightened to move around his own house.”
The judge concluded Ms Lees’s plants were “unreasonably overgrown” and her failure to remedy this “amounts to a nuisance”.
He issued an injunction banning her from threatening or intimidating Mr Kaye, his tenants and visitors, communicating directly with them, banging, shouting or screaming at those above, and obstructing them in accessing or leaving the flat.
The compensation will be decided at a later hearing. Mr Kaye’s lawyers say it could be as much as £1 million, as he claims his flat is “worthless”.
Read more news of London on our site.