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…usque ad coelum et ad inferos

Solicitors may or may not be from Hell, but there will be occasions when, to Hell they must go.

We see this in Star Energy Weald Basin Ltd & Anor v Bocardo SA [2010] UKSC 35 (28 July 2010)

The appellant, had drilled an oil well sideways under the respondent’s land. It had been found, at first instance, that this was a trespass.

The Supreme Court remarked;

“It has been observed that anything that is drilled below a depth of about 8.7 miles or 14 kilometres would be crushed by the earth’s pressure of 50,000 pounds per square inch and vaporised by a temperature of 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit:…”

This, the Court found, was no bar to the correctness of the finding that drilling 3 wells at respective depths of 2,900, 2,800 and 950 feet below the respondent’s land was a trespass.