Enforcement by injunction and contempt proceedings has become increasingly popular in recent years and is often fairly technical. Landmark barristers frequently appear at hearings and inquiries dealing with s174/s195 appeals, in the High Court on s.289 challenges and judicial reviews against enforcement decisions and in Magistrates’ and Crown Courts. Recent high profile cases include Huddlestone v Bassetlaw DC  EWCA Civ 21 and R (Oates) v Secretary of State  EWCA Civ 2229.
Examples of our work in enforcement include:
- Drafting reports to authorise enforcement notices, stop notices, decisions under s70C and direct action, in particular the treatment of Article 8 rights under the ECHR/Human Rights Act 1998, the best interests of children and the public sector equality duty
- The extent of the obligation to make welfare inquiries where enforcement action will cause homelessness or other personal hardship and the protection of personal data elicited by such inquiries
- The meaning and significance of ’intentional unauthorised development’
- The construction and enforcement of planning obligations
- The construction of conditions and enforcement by breach of condition notice
- Drafting enforcement notices etc, the scope for amendment on appeal, nullity and the dangers of under enforcement
- The relative merits of direct action, prosecution and injunction proceedings where an enforcement notice has been breached
- The effect of deception on claims for immunity, the operation of ss171BA – 171BC and the preparation and assessment of evidence intended to prove immunity, including Thurrock continuity
- s174 and s195 appeals and the legitimate scope of ground (f) appeals
- s289 challenges
- s70C and the emerging caselaw on its scope
- Prosecutions under s179 and s210, defences asserting the invalidity of the enforcement notice/TPO and the drafting of prosecution evidence, summonses and indictments
- Listed building prosecutions, including the meaning of ‘demolition’ and ‘alteration’ in s7 of the Listed Building Act
- Confiscation proceedings.
The grant of an interim injunction can often be a quick and effective way of pre-empting or terminating a breach of planning control. Several Landmark barristers have particular experience of:
- Obtaining urgent without notice negative injunctions, including against persons unknown
- Drafting reports authorising injunction proceedings, so as to avoid collateral challenges
- In relation to applications for positive injunctions, drafting evidence to address issues raised in South Bucks v Porter, the public sector equality duty, Article 8 ECHR and the best interests of children
- Obtaining borough/district wide planning injunctions and injunctions protecting all land in an authority’s ownership
- Deciding between use of an injunction and direct action under s178
- Enforcing injunctions by proceedings under CPR r. 70.2A and by committal proceedings.
Barristers have successfully acted in many recent notorious claims, including the claims for injunctions to prevent interference with the felling of highway trees in Sheffield, to prevent the occupation by gypsy caravans of areas of Green Belt in Basildon, to require the demolition of Mr Fidler’s notorious mock-Tudor castle in Reigate, to terminate the ‘Occupy’ protest outside St Paul’s Cathedral, an injunction to demolish a £1m rear garden “man cave” (Forest of Dean DC v Wildin  EWHC 2811 (QB)), and North York Moors National Park Authority v Bohlin  EWHC 1142 (Ch).