Tommy Gallagher, 77, is embroiled in a bitter legal dispute over the fate of his semi-detached home in Burnage, where the Wonderwall hit-makers grew up
The estranged father of Oasis stars, Liam and Noel Gallagher, claims his house was ‘stolen’ in a property scam involving one of the brothers’ childhood friends, a tribunal has heard.
Tommy Gallagher, 77, is embroiled in a bitter legal dispute over the fate of his semi-detached home in Burnage, where the Wonderwall hit-makers grew up.
He claims he was faced the ‘disaster’ of having his house repossessed when his mortgage deal expired, leaving him with £27,000 to pay – and no way to pay it.
However, Mr Gallagher claims Thomas Keenan, said to be a childhood friend of Noel’s, suggested his brother Ricky Keenan might be able to buy his house for him.
He claims his own idea was to ‘pay the mortgage off’. But instead, a tribunal heard he signed a deal to sell the house for a total sum of £115,000.
The three-bedroom house was said to worth around £130,000 at the time.
The property was sold in January 2017 and is now owned by Asim Iqbal Ali, the court heard.
But Mr Gallagher claims as part of the agreement, he could live in the property rent-free for the rest of his life.
However it is claimed he actually signed papers agreeing to pay £650-a-month in rent – which he denies.
Mr Gallagher has now launched civil proceedings against Mr Ali, Chromolyte Limited and Hanna Property Company Limited, claiming he was defrauded, that the sale should be annulled and the property, where he still is currently staying, should be returned to him.
He disputes how the house came to be sold, who it was sold to, and what arrangements were agreed about Mr Gallagher living there as a tenant.
All three respondents deny the claims.
Tommy Gallagher is the father of Oasis brothers Noel and Liam Gallagher (pictured together)
The First Tier tribunal hearing in Manchester this week heard how in 2016, Mr Gallagher received a letter from Santander bank explaining that his mortgage was going to expire in October that year.
Mr Gallagher, who separated from Liam and Noel’s mum Peggy when they were children, was ‘shocked’ as he believed it had been due to expire in 2017 and there was still around £27,000 to pay off.
He struggled to come up with the money and feared his home would be repossessed. ‘It was a disaster,’ Mr Gallagher said.
In a witness statement, Mr Gallagher claims that he discussed the situation with Thomas Keenan, a man he described as a ‘family friend’.
‘Thomas was a musician, I helped him a lot getting gigs,’ Mr Gallagher told the court.
Mr Gallagher claims Thomas Keenan was a childhood friend of Noel Gallagher (pictured) and used to stay around his house
‘He stayed in my house many times. When he was about 12-years-old, he was playing with my son Noel up in the bedroom.
‘I’ve known him about 20 years I would say, he was like a brother to me.’
Mr Gallagher alleges that Thomas Keenan suggested his brother Ricky Keenan might be able to buy his house for him, the court heard.
However, Mr Gallagher says initially he only wanted to find the capital to pay off the mortgage.
He said: ‘My idea was to pay the mortgage off. I thought all we needed was the money to pay for it.’
The house was sold in 2017 and is now owned by Iqbal Ali, the court heard.
At the tribunal on Wednesday, barrister Philip Byrne questioned Mr Gallagher about whether he signed a number of legal documents, including a contract of sale and transfer of deeds.
Mr Gallagher told the court he signed ‘two or three’ documents, ‘maybe four’, but he claimed he didn’t know what they were.
When shown photocopies of the relevant documents, Mr Gallagher also claimed some of the signatures were not his.
Asked about an agreement he supposedly signed to rent the house back, he said:
‘No way, I didn’t sign that. Do you think I’m going to sign for £650 a month to rent my own house? A madman wouldn’t do it.’
The court heard it is Mr Gallagher’s claim that a deal for the sale of his property was first agreed in January 2017 at the office of solicitor Paul Normandale, in Cleckheaton, Yorkshire.
Mr Gallagher said he was picked up from his house by Ricky and Thomas Keenan and that he did not know where he was going.
‘I thought we were going to a solicitor’s in Manchester, next thing we were on the M62,’ said Mr Gallagher.
The First Tier tribunal hearing in Manchester this week heard how in 2016, Mr Gallagher received a letter from Santander bank explaining that his mortgage on the home in Ashburn Avenue (street pictured: Google street view) was going to expire in October that year
‘[Thomas] was trying to trick me into believing they were trying to pick me a solicitor.’
Asked if he had any evidence for an alleged collusion between Ricky Meenan and Mr Ali, Mr Gallagher said he didn’t, adding: ‘That’s my opinion.’
Mr Byrne, appearing for Mr Ali, said that suggestion was ‘absolutely denied’ adding: ‘That’s nothing more than speculation.’
‘These are not the issues, the issue is they stole my house!’ Mr Gallagher, who was represented by Amardeep Dhillon, told the court.
In his witness statement, Mr Normandale said he was first met Mr Gallagher in October 2016.
He said Mr Gallagher explained his ‘predicament’ with Santander and mentioned a ‘friend’ had offered to buy the property.
Mr Normandale said the friend would then pay off the mortgage and pay some money every month.
He said: ‘I fully discussed with him the implications of the payment of balance without adequate security, ensuring that he could continue to live in the property rent free for the remainder of his life.’
Mr Normandale says Mr Gallagher ‘did not discuss his relationship with the Keenans’.
He added that in his opinion, Mr Gallagher was ‘elderly, divorced and in poor health’ and had a ‘serious drink problem’.
Asked to respond, Mr Gallagher said: ‘I wasn’t in poor health, I drink when I go out, I don’t go out to drink, I’m a social drinker.
‘And I’m not divorced, when I marry, I marry for life. I’m separated.’
Discussing the deal that was made in Cleckheaton, Mr Normandale claims he told Mr Gallagher it was ‘not helpful’ for the Keenans to be present as ‘they had an association with the buyer.’
‘The whole deal boiled down to trust between Ricky Keenan and Tommy Gallagher,’ Mr Normandale said.
‘Everything was dependant on the relationship with Mr Keenan. It wasn’t going to be documented in any way.’
The court heard neither Ricky or Thomas Keenan are set to appear as witnesses.
The hearing continues on Thursday.