Cringleford pensioner harassed Norwich tenant

A pensioner was hauled before the courts after harassing a tenant with texts and emails over a dispute.

Landlord Anthony Wickham, 77, of Keswick Road, Cringleford, pleaded guilty to harassing tenant, Julia Gooch between October 2009 and June 2010 when he appeared before Norwich magistrates yesterday.

Oliver Haswell, prosecuting, said Ms Gooch had entered into a lease agreement with Mr Wickham to run a commercial property in Norwich city centre, which she ran as a beauty salon.

He said: 'Under the lease, a civil dispute arose and this is still ongoing. This was the catalyst for the behaviour that followed.

'Wickham took it upon himself to contact her directly rather than pursue the matter through the courts. He conducted a campaign with letters and emails and visits to the salon and remonstrated with her about the state of affairs.

'Last July, police issued him with a police information notice – previously known as a harassment warning – but, subsequent to this, he sent two text messages to her mobile phone.'

Mr Haswell applied for a restraining order, which was granted by District Judge David Cooper.

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The order prohibits Wickham from contacting Ms Gooch either directly or indirectly except through their solicitors. He was also handed a 12-month conditional discharge and ordered to pay �85 costs.

Wickham was in tears during yesterday's hearing and told the judge he would have liked the chance to tell him the full story. However, his solicitor, Simon Nicholls, said he had nothing to add.

Wickham had also faced a second charge of harassing Nicholas Gooch, but the case was dismissed by the court.