Protection of the Countryside

Landmark barristers have appeared in most of the significant cases in recent years which have addressed the impacts of development on the countryside and protected landscapes, including National Parks, the Broads, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONBs) and the Green Belt.


Members deal regularly with major infrastructure in the countryside (including road, rail and airports) housing developments of all sizes (including numerous strategic urban extensions and new settlements) and a range of substantial energy, waste and minerals schemes.

They also have broad expertise in relation to the exercise of rights of access and use of protected landscapes and have appeared in many of the most important cases in this regard. They were involved in numerous inquiries as to access land following the coming into force of the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000.

Members of chambers have recently authored a specialist work on Planning Law and Rights of Way in National Parks, the Broads and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONBs).

Recent court highlights include:

  • Darwall v Dartmoor National Park Authority [2023] EHWC 35 (Ch) – right to wild camp in Dartmoor National Park
  • R (Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster) v North Yorkshire County Council [2020] UKSC 3 – Green Belt and minerals extraction
  • Monkhill Ltd v SSHCLG [2021] EWCA Civ 74 – AONB policy and its role in the NPPF presumption in favour of sustainable development
  • Dover DC v Campaign to Protect Rural England (Kent) [2018] 1 W.L.R. 108 – in which the Supreme Court considered a major housing development in the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
  • R (Oakley) v South Cambridgeshire CC [2017] EWCA Civ 71 – where the Court of Appeal dealt with a proposed football stadium in the Green Belt outside Cambridge.

Practice Managers

Contact our friendly and helpful Practice Managers for more information about our barristers and services or to make an enquiry.

Ben Connor

Practice Director

020 7421 2483

Ben Connor

Kevin Squires

Senior Practice Manager

020 7421 1351

Kevin Squires New background

Michael Gooch

Senior Practice Manager

020 7421 1305

Michael Gooch new

Jason Allen

Senior Practice Manager

020 7421 1306

Jason Allen new

Jonathan Barley

Practice Manager

020 7421 2480

Jonathan Barley new

Richard Bolton

Senior Practice Manager

020 7421 1392

Richard Bolton new

Charlotte Hockney

Assistant Practice Manager

020 7421 1303

Charlotte Hockney new

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