timberland uk boots Former Cumberland Estate Agents boss loses employment tribunal
The former boss of a prominent Cumbrian estate agents has lost his employment tribunal after a judge ruled he gave false evidence.
After a five day hearing, an employment tribunal judge has ruled that Nick Elgey, who rose to the top job at The Cumberland Estate Agents, deliberately tried to mislead the court with evidence he knew was untrue.
The five day employment tribunal heard that in an encounter in Carlisle with one senior former colleague, which came after Mr Elgey landed a job with a local property developer,he compared The Cumberland Building Society his former estate agency’s parent company to North Korea’s dictatorship.
But tribunal judge Jessica Hill comprehensively threw out Mr Elgey’s claim for constructive dismissal, rejecting his claims that two former senior colleagues had treated him aggressively.
As she delivered a summary of her judgement, Mrs Hill ruled that senior colleagues of Mr Elgey including general manager Nyree Legge and the Cumberland’s deputy chief executive Peter Temple acted reasonably.
She said: “Having considered the evidence, I have found that the respondent [The Cumberland] did not conduct itself in a manner likely to destroy or seriously damage the relationship of trust and confidence.
“I have found that the respondent conducted itself properly.”
She said the majority of the incidents that Mr Elgey complained of had simply been issues relating to the normal day to day management of the business.
She accepted that Mr Elgey had been distressed that his bosses had decided to review his management performance and that he did not agree with their criticisms, but that was not a reason to find he was unfairly dismissed.
Mrs Hill said: “Miss Legge and Mr Temple both gave clear and cogent evidence that whilst he was excellent in some parts of his role they had concerns over his lack of strategic thinking and drive.”
The evidence showed both managers tried to give him support, both in terms of line management and resources,
Mr Elgey’s perceptions of how he was treated were completely at odds with the evidence. Mrs Hill went on to say that aspects of the tribunal had caused her great concern.
Mrs Hill said: “The motivation for [Mr Elgey] bringing these proceedings was to damage the reputation of Mr Temple and to bring down Mr Parr [The Cumberland’s chief executive. The tribunal views this conduct as a deliberate attempt to mislead it and provide evidence that he knew was untruthful.”
During the hearing, Miss Legge had described how she had tried during a meeting to tell Mr Elgey that she was unhappy with his delivery of a business update to senior colleagues but he had become aggressive, and slammed the door as he left.
Another colleague who saw Mr Elgey at that meeting through window was concerned enough to make a note of his behaviour, though Mr Elgey consistently denied behaving aggressively.
The tribunal also heard that Mr Elgey, while on sick leave, did unpaid “theraputic” work with property developer Citadel Estates.
The Cumberland’s barrister Amy Smith said this work had clearly put him in clear breach of his employment contract, and created a conflict of interest. Mr Elgey rejected her suggestion that he could not accept criticism at work.
In August, by which time Mr Elgey was working for Citadel Estates, Miss Legge had a chance meeting with him in Carlisle.
Describing that encounter, she said: “He said that things have worked out for him but that wasn’t the point. [He] said he can go into work without shaving; he can listen to the radio while he’s working;
and he doesn’t have to go to meetings.”