Legitimate Expectation

December 4th, 2017 by James Goudie KC

In Save Britain’s Heritage v SoS for CLG and Westminster City Council (2017) EWHC 3059 (Admin) Lang J held that there was no duty on the SoS to give reasons for a decision not to call in the controversial planning application for the Paddington Cube development.  There had been a practice that could well have given rise to a procedural legitimate expectation that reasons would be given for non-intervention. However, that practice had ceased.  There was no longer an established practice to that effect. On the contrary, the established practice had become that reasons would not be given. The earlier practice and statements sought to be relied upon had been superseded.  They could no longer found a legitimate expectation that reasons would be given.  No misleading representation had been made at the relevant time.  Anyone active in planning matters should have been aware of the well-publicised change. If any expectation remained, it had ceased to be a legitimate one. There was no legal requirement to issue a formal statement of the change.  Practice and policy are subject to change.

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