(Court of Appeal, McFarlane LJ, 25 July 2012)
The 5-year-old child had supervised contact with his father at a contact centre and the father applied to remove the supervision restriction. The mother objected on the grounds that contact was no longer in the child's best interests. The judge concluded that the child's best interests required a cessation of direct contact but monthly indirect contact was granted.
An appeal to the circuit judge failed and the father sought permission to appeal in the Court of Appeal. There were no matters of principle or any other compelling reason to grant permission. The root of the child's difficulty with contact was the mother's anxiety about him spending time with his father. There was an expectation that the mother would engage in therapy to put herself in a better position to cope with contact. The needs of the child included having a settled relationship with his father and mother.