July 6th, 2023 by James Goudie KC

The Habitats Directive (notwithstanding Brexit) and domestic Regulations mandate that an appropriate assessment be undertaken before planning consent is given for a development. That is irrespective of what stage in the planning process has been reached according to domestic law. In C G Fry and Son Ltd v SoS for Levelling Up, etc (2023) EWHL 1622 (Admin) Sir Ross Cranston holds that application of Article 6(3) of the Directive and a broad and purposive approach to the interpretation of Regulations 63 and 70 of the Regulations requires the application of the assessment provisions to the discharge of conditions. The strict precautionary approach required for the whole development would be undermined if those provisions were limited to the initial, permission, stage of a multi-stage process.

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