Planning

Our Planning Team is at the leading edge of developments in planning law to ensure pragmatism and efficiency of advice. The team includes several former local authority in-house lawyers, which means they are well placed to advise all sides of a planning issue in order to achieve objectives.

We work with developers and local planning authorities on a range of issues, along with third parties wishing to comment or object on development proposals including issues relating to compulsory purchase and compensation.

Specialisms

Relevant work

  • Advising the local planning authority in connection with the redevelopment of the Empress State Building in Earls Court, including a section 106 agreement providing off site affordable housing, financial contributions and linking the proposal with the wider Earls Court redevelopment.
  • Undertaking section 288 challenges for developer clients on sites in St Austell, Swindon and Wincanton in respect of both Inspector and Secretary of State decisions and advising a developer in Devon in respect of such a challenge brought by an environmental group.
  • Negotiating, on behalf of a housebuilder client, a section 106 Agreement for 500 home site in Somerset with both District and County Councils including affordable housing and various infrastructure contributions.
  • Advising a social housing company on their acquisition of new affordable housing units on a  multi-developer site at Emerson's Green, Bristol.  The site comprises a 99 hectare urban extension comprising employment, schools, housing, community facilities, transportation infrastructure, and open space. The matter included a the provision of a s106 Agreement that provides for provision of the amenities plus £33million of contributions.   

News

Section 106 Agreements: A Short Guide

This article summarises some of the main powers and practices relating to the use of section 106 agreements.

Read more

All change again - The Neighbourhood Planning and Infrastructure Bill

Following a swathe of political ping pong, the much anticipated Housing And Planning Bill received Royal Assent on 12 May 2016.

Read more

Battle of the Paddles: Lords-v-Commons, Planning Matter Discussions

In readiness for this summer's Olympics in Rio, the House of Lords and the House of Commons have been practising their ping-pong (or whiff-whaff according to Boris Johnson) using the Planning and Housing Bill as the ball.

Read more

S106 Dispute Resolution Procedure

An amendment to the Housing and Planning Bill has sought to introduce a section 106 dispute resolution procedure.

Read more

A Year On: What's Changed?

As the new year is now in full swing, it seems appropriate to reflect on some of the major legal changes of the last year and the likely consequences for planning in 2016.

Read more

Compensation under the Compulsory Purchase Act where Compulsory Purchase Powers have expired and have never been exercised

On 22 February 2016, the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) handed down its decision in relation to five preliminary issues in this case, which involves a £15 million claim for compensation for injurious affection pursuant to s10 of the Compulsory Purchase Act 1965 ("CPA").

Read more

Neighbour from hell? Try living next door to the French Embassy

Self-made billionaire property tycoon, Jon Hunt, founder of Foxtons estate agents, is in a ferocious legal battle with the French ambassador, Sylvie Bermann.

Read more

The significance of Common Land and Town and Village Greens

The law surrounding 'Common Land' and 'Town and Village Greens' is complex. At the time of writing there are two pieces of relevant legislation which are central to governing the regime for the registration and management of common land and greens.

Read more

Pooling Contributions: Regulation 123 of the Community Infrastructure Levy Regulations 2010

The Review Panel appointed by the Department for Communities and Local Government has recently concluded the first stage of the "Community Infrastructure Levy Review".

Read more

Starter Homes: Good Start or Non Starter?

The Housing and Planning Bill, currently passing through Parliament, is adding to the different types of affordable housing. It is about to create a new creature of statute, the "starter home".

Read more

Building your own home – what can Councils do to help?

Many self-build registers are now set up, and the government’s self-build portal lists much of the country as having minimal plots available. Writing before the government announced its plan to directly commission the construction of ‘starter’ homes on publicly owned land Partner and Head of Planning at Ashfords LLP, John Bosworth and Trainee Solicitor, Lee Ward discuss what Councils can now do to help potential self-builders.

Read more

Self-build and Custom Housebuilding

On 1 April 2016 the remaining provisions of the Self-build and Custom Housebuilding Act 2015 will come into force.

Read more

Is law reform the only hope for Britain’s architectural glories?

Britain’s rich collection of listed buildings is at risk of neglect, with debate raging over whether legislation is required to rescue the country’s architectural heritage.

Read more

Should councils consider greater use of temporary stop notices?

It is important to recognise that where there is an alleged breach of planning control local planning authorities are responsible, in the public interest, for deciding what (if any) enforcement action should be taken.

Read more

Case Comment: EIA Screening Decisions - The duty to give reasons

The Court of Appeal decision in Jedwell v Denbighshire County Council & Ors [2015], which overturned the decision handed down by the Administrative Court, during Judicial Review proceedings, earlier this year, highlights the importance for planning officers to provide adequate reasoning when making a determination that an Environmental Impact Assessment ("EIA") is not required.

Read more

High Court considers whether basement extensions fall within Permitted Development Rights

Permitted Development Rights provide an exception to the general rule that planning permission is required for any Development (as defined in the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 ("TCPA") on land.

Read more

Planning Enforcement Fund - Ashfords offer a joint fixed fee service for Local Planning Authorities

Ashfords in conjunction with 39 Essex Chambers are offering a joint fixed fee service which enables Local Planning Authorities (LPAs) to take advantage of a new £1m Government fund for securing injunctions in planning enforcement matters.

Read more

Support for the Garden bridge

A new charity, the Garden Bridge Trust, has applied for planning permission for a pedestrian footbridge across the River Thames linking Temple London Underground Station directly with an area of land on the southern embankment in front of ITV Studios.

Read more

10-unit threshold introduced for Section 106 affordable housing + tariff style contributions

On 28th November 2014 the Department for Communities and Local Government ("DCLG") published revised planning guidance introducing a new 10-unit threshold for Section 106 affordable housing and tariff-style contributions aimed at reducing planning costs for small scale and self-build development.

Read more

SuDs Consultation: implementation through changes to the planning regime?

As part of the Government’s initiative to implement sustainable drainage systems ("SuDs") the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs ("Defra") and the Department for Communities and Local Government ("DCLG") have launched a joint consultation setting out a possible approach for implementing SuDs, and mechanisms for ensuring their long term maintenance, through changes to the current planning regime.

Read more

South Somerset District Council submits its Community Infrastructure Levy Charging Schedule

On 27 May 2016 South Somerset District Council ('the Council') submitted its draft CIL Charging Schedule ('the Schedule') to the Secretary of State.

Read more

All tied up? Section 106 Agreements Preventing Disposal of Agricultural Holdings unless Sold as a Whole

There has been a recent shift in the Government's approach to agricultural ties. Where it was previously acceptable for Local Planning Authorities ("LPA") to impose planning obligations which restricted the sale of agricultural holdings, unless otherwise disposed as a whole, this may no longer be required. New tests and guidance may make a development acceptable in planning terms.

Read more

National Infrastructure Commission launches National Infrastructure Assessment Consultation

The government is in the process of establishing the National Infrastructure Commission ('the Commission') by legislation. In the meantime it is operating in 'interim' form, with Lord Adonis appointed as its interim chair.

Read more

Court of Appeal restores policy exempting small sites from affordable housing

The Government has won its appeal to the Court of Appeal against the quashing of its policy that small sites should not contribute towards affordable housing.

Read more

Privatising the planning system?

One of the measures in the Housing and Planning Bill 2016 which has created the most controversy is the Government's intention to open up the planning system to competition. It is proposed, in pilot areas, to test the benefit of competition by allowing the processing - not determination - of planning applications other than by Local Planning Authorities ("LPAs").

Read more

Planning Inspectorate Update April 2016

Steve Quartermain sent a general planning update to local authorities earlier this month (April 2016), outlining planning developments over the past six months.

Read more

DCLG consults on Starter Homes Regulations

We wrote on 22 January 2016 about the Starter Homes provisions contained in the Housing and Planning Bill (see 'Starter Homes: Good Start or Non Starter?').

Read more

My Beautiful Launderette: New Permitted Development Rights introduced from 6 April 2016

From 6 April 2016, amendments are made to the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (England) Order 2015 ("GPDO 2015"). The Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (England) (Amendment) Order 2016 ("the Amending Order") introduces new PD rights as well as putting the existing office to residential right on a permanent footing. We look at the key changes below.

Read more

High Court rules that Council's CIL demand is unlawful

In the recent case of R (Orbital Shopping Park Swindon Ltd) v Swindon Borough Council the High Court has ruled that the demand for CIL payments by Swindon Borough Council for the Claimant's installation of a mezzanine floor was unlawful.

Read more

Housing and Planning Bill: DCLG Consultation on implementation of planning changes

On the 18 February 2016 the Department for Communities and Local Government launched a consultation on the implementation in England of the planning changes within the Housing and Planning Bill.

Read more

Housing and Planning Bill Consultation: Permission in Principle

The Housing and Planning Bill, as currently drafted, introduces a new 'permission in principle' route for obtaining planning permission in respect of 'housing led' developments.

Read more

Renewable Energy: Government Review of Tidal Lagoons announced

On Wednesday 10 February the Government announced that it will launch an independent review into the feasibility and practicality of tidal lagoon energy in the UK this spring.

Read more

Proceeds of Crime and Planning

It is now accepted that a Confiscation Order under The Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 ("POCA") can be applied for when someone fails to comply with the terms of an enforcement notice and financially benefits from their unlawful activity.

Read more

The Energy Bill 2015/2016 - Key Policy Area Fact Sheets Published

On 12 January 2016 the Department of Energy and Climate Change ("DECC") published fact sheets providing an overview of key policy areas in the Energy Bill 2015/2016 and Keeling Schedules to illustrate how primary legislation would be amended by clauses in the Bill.

Read more

Permission in principle: One step removed from prior approval and permitted development?

It's been just over 9 weeks since the Housing and Planning Bill was introduced into the House of Commons. One of the main talking points, which followed the first reading, was the proposed introduction of "permission in principle".

Read more

Spreading roots - current issues surrounding planning requirements for basement extensions

As property prices escalate, particularly in London, more people are considering extending their properties underground to increase floor space and create a more comfortable living environment.

Read more

Will new planning laws make any difference?

No sooner had the prime minister delivered his speech on the planning system than the Housing and Planning Bill was introduced in the House of Commons last week.

Read more

Commercial Office or New Home?

In 2013 the government introduced temporary permitted developments rights which allowed property owners to convert office premises into new homes without having to apply for planning permission.

Read more

Court of Appeal says "I'm Your Man"…but only where there is no alleged change of use

Local planning authorities may take enforcement action where development appears to have taken place without planning permission or where conditions attached to a planning permission have not been complied with. 'Development' is defined in section 55 of the Town and Country Planning Act as " the carrying out of building, engineering, mining or other operations… or the making of any material change in the use of any buildings or other land."

Read more

Deemed Discharge of Planning Conditions

The Government has introduced the principle of deemed discharge into the Town and County Planning Act 1990 (by way of the Infrastructure Act 2015) and consolidated and reissued the Town and Country Planning (Development Management Procedure) Order 2015 (the "DMPO 2015") to provide the detail on how deemed discharge works in practice. The new legislation comes into effect on 15 April 2015.

Read more

High Court guidance for local authorities unable to defend JR proceedings due to "financial reasons"

In the recent decision of R (on the application of Midcounties Co-operative Ltd) v Forest of Dean District Council and Trilogy the High Court provided direction to local authorities prevented from defending their decisions in judicial review proceedings because of financial constraints.

Read more

Concealment: High Court confirms Welwyn has not been replaced

Local planning authorities may take enforcement action where development appears to have taken place without planning permission or where conditions attached to a planning permission have not been complied with. In the case of the change of use of a building to a single dwellinghouse, once the unauthorised use has continued for four years without any enforcement action being taken the development becomes immune from enforcement.

Read more

Adopted Public Highway - Payment of Commuted Sums

Section 38 of the Highways Act 1980 is the usual means by which highway authorities agree with a developer to adopt a road; that is the point at which the road becomes maintainable at the public expense. The traditional understanding had been that the highway authority agrees that provided the road is constructed to a pre-agreed standard by the developer, it will accept the adoption, with the highway authority then becoming responsible for its future maintenance.

Read more

Bosworth John 5602

 
Partner
Planning
+44 (0)1392 333842

Download vCard

 

Key contacts