Lang J dismisses challenge to St Albans Green Belt permission

Field Green belt

By judgment handed down on 4 August 2022, Lang J dismissed a challenge by Save North St Albans Green Belt to a decision of St Albans District Council to grant permission for 150 homes on a site (Sewell Park) with a long planning history (R(Save North St Albans Green Belt) v St Albans District Council [2022] EWHC 2087 (Admin)). The grounds of claim challenge the Council’s approach to the planning history and basis for departing from previous decisions; and the advice of the officers to the Committee in relation to the density of the proposals which were supported by application materials which largely related to an 132 unit iteration of the scheme. Lang J accepted that at certain points of the report the officer could have reminded members that a previous scheme related to a smaller site, but concluded that the failure was not seriously misleading in a material way. Jenny Wigley QC appeared for the Claimant, Save North St Albans Green Belt. Matthew Dale-Harris appeared for the Defendant, St Albans District Council. The judgement may be found here. Press coverage can be found in Planning Magazine.

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