Extension of Time

May 2nd, 2019 by James Goudie QC in Planning and Environmental

Whether Kerr J was wrong when he exercised his discretion to extend time for a challenge to be brought by a claim for judicial review against a planning permission granted more than five and a half years before the claim was issued was the question at the heart of the appeal in R (Thornton Hall Hotel Ltd) v Wirral MBC (2019) EWCA Civ 737.  The appeal raised two main issues: first, in view of the delay of more than five and a half years, whether the Judge erred in extending time for the claim to be brought, under CPR r.3.1(2)(a); and second, having regard to the substance of the claim, whether he was wrong not to exercise his discretion to refuse relief under Section 31(6) of the Senior Courts Act 1981.  The appeal was dismissed on both issues.

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Applications for Planning Permission

April 25th, 2019 by James Goudie QC in Planning and Environmental

In Gladman Developments Ltd v Canterbury City Council (2019) EWCA Civ 669, in dismissing an appeal from Dove J, Lindblom LJ, at paragraphs 21/23, restated the correct approach to determining an application for planning permission.  Section 38(6) of the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 requires the determination to be made “in accordance with the [development] plan unless material considerations indicate otherwise”. The development plan thus has statutory primacy, and a statutory presumption in its favour – which government policy in the NPPF does not.

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Permitted development

February 14th, 2019 by James Goudie QC in Planning and Environmental

In Westminster City Council v SoS (2019) EWHC 176 (Admin) Ouseley J held that under the GPDO, the whole development for which prior approval as permitted development was sought had to fall within the Class of development relied on. If part fell outside the Class, it was not a permitted development.  Under Schedule 2 Part 16 Class A, a proposed telephone kiosk had to be “for the purpose” of the telephone network.  A kiosk with a large digital advertising panel was not entirely for that purpose and did not fall within the Class.  It was not permitted development.


Planning Enforcement

February 4th, 2019 by James Goudie QC in Planning and Environmental

 Johnson v Windsor and Maidenhead RBC (2019) EWHC 160 (Admin) is concerned with enforcement proceedings in relation to land, pursuant to the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (“the TCPA”). Justine Thornton QC, sitting as a Deputy High Court Judge, described the legal framework as follows:-

(1)       Planning permission is required for the carrying out of development of land;

(2)       The making of a material change in the use of land is development;

(3)       Carrying out development without the required planning permission, or failing to comply with any condition or limitation pursuant to which the planning permission has been granted, constitutes a breach of planning control; Read more »


Community Infrastructure Levy

January 30th, 2019 by James Goudie QC in Planning and Environmental

On the requirement for substantial compliance by a notice for exemption from the levy, see R (Shropshire Council) v SoS (2019) EWHC 16 (Admin). The decision of the Court of Appeal in R v SoS, ex p Jeyeanthan (2000) 1 WLR 354 was distinguished.  The Judge said:-

“29. Jeyeanthan helps to answer the question what is to happen if a person undertaking a particular act has failed to comply with all the requirements prescribed for that act. But that can be a relevant question only if the actor has actually engaged in the regulated conduct. If the path of compliance has not, so to speak, been trodden at all, there is likely to be little scope or need for analysis of error or omissions in attempted or partial compliance. Read more »


Air Quality

January 29th, 2019 by James Goudie QC in Planning and Environmental

The duty of the Secretary of State under Directive 2008/50 and the Air Quality Standards Regulations 2010 is to ensure the preparation and implementation of an Air Quality plan. The duty as “competent authority” does not extend to exercising his power in any particular way, such as by calling in a planning application for his own determination. So held in R (Shirley) v SoS, Canterbury City Council Interested Party (2019) EWCA Civ 22.


Conservation Areas

January 29th, 2019 by James Goudie QC in Planning and Environmental

On the relationship between the Strategic Environmental Assessment Directive and the Habitats Directive, see the Opinion of Advocate-General Kokott, delivered on 24 January 2019, in Cases C-43/18 and C-321/18.


Stop Notices

January 29th, 2019 by James Goudie QC in Planning and Environmental

There is an entitlement to compensation in respect of any loss or damage directly attributable to any prohibition contained in a stop notice. However, such compensation has to be for an ascertainable loss. The loss has to be attributable to the prohibition in the stop notice, not some other cause. The entitlement to compensation is there predicated on there being, in the relevant period, some actual loss, not a hypothetical one. What matters is the circumstances as they actually were while the notice was in force, not some other, imaginary, scenario.

Moreover, compensation is excluded for the prohibition of “any activity” that “when the notice is in force, constitutes or contributes” to a breach of panning control. It is immaterial that the activity might not be in breach of planning control by the time it was carried out.

So held in Huddleston v Bassetlaw District Council (2019) EWCA Civ 21.


Heritage Assets/Development Plan Policies

January 24th, 2019 by James Goudie QC in Planning and Environmental

R (Liverpool Open and Green Spaces Community Interest Company) v Liverpool City Council (2019) EWHC 55 (Admin) was two claims by the applicant community interest company (LOGS) against the grant of planning permissions by the defendant local planning authority (the LPA). The first permits relocation and laying out of a miniature railway with associated buildings and parking. The second permission is for the building of 39 new dwellings and conversion of a historic house and grounds into

12 apartments. The site for these proposed developments is an area of open land at Calderstones Park, Liverpool (the park). LOGS is concerned to prevent the developments which, it says, would unlawfully change the character of the park. Read more »


General Permitted Development Order (“GDPO”)

January 22nd, 2019 by James Goudie QC in Planning and Environmental

Is a nursery, attended by young children, a “school”, within the meaning of Class M of the GPDO? That was the question of construction posed in Bright Horizons v SoS for CLG and Watford Borough Council (2019) EWHC 14 (Admin). The Court held that there was no good reason for giving to the word “school” in the GPDO anything other than its ordinary meaning, which does not include a nursery.