Matthew Dale-Harris

Call: 2012
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Practice Summary

Matthew is a junior barrister (called 2012) who specialises in all areas of town and country planning, real property, leasehold enfranchisement, EU, public and environmental law. He frequently appears for clients in a wide range of forums, including in public inquiries, the High Court, County Courts, First and Upper Tier Tribunals, and the Valuation Tribunal. He accepts instructions directly from the public and professional clients as well as from solicitors and is equally happy working for commercial parties, local objectors or central and local government.

He is a contributor to Garner’s Environmental Law in relation to which he writes the chapter on Strategic Environmental Assessment (with Charles Banner) and is the editor of the Environment section of the Civil Court Practice 2017 (The Green Book). He has previously assisted the editors of Hill and Redman in relation to the section on Private Sector Residential Tenancies.

He frequently gives talks and seminars and is currently organising (with Matthew Fraser) a Landmark Chambers five-part series covering the “Nuts and Bolts of Property Law”. A recent talk with Sasha White QCcovered caselaw and guidance on Enabling Development and Heritage.

Recent court, inquiry and advisory highlights (2016/17) include:

  • Wylde v Waverley BC [2017] EWHC 466 (Admin): appeared (with David Smith) for the claimants in public procurement litigation in the High Court concerning a £108m development agreement for the regeneration of Farnham town centre.
  • Cheshire East Local Plan Examination: appearing for Save Macclesfield Green Belt over 7 days of hearings into the Cheshire East Local Plan.
  • R (Shirley) v SSCLG (CO/690/2017) acting (with Reuben Taylor QC) for a developer in response to a judicial review alleging that the Secretary of State’s refusal to call in an application was in breach of the Air Quality Directive.
  • Airports Commission Process (Heathrow Third Runway): advising Gatwick Airports Limited as part of a team of Landmark Counsel (Neil King QC, Reuben Taylor QC and Robert Walton) on the Government’s draft Airports NPS.
  • Frandon Hotel enforcement inquiry: appeared for the successful appellant against an enforcement notice who was able to establish a 10-year lawful use of a hotel as a hostel for the homeless.
  • Larwood v Kinnish (B00SS482): appeared for claimant seeking possession of land and facing a counterclaim for adverse possession.
  • R (Gleeson Homes) v SSCLG (CO/2204/2017): acting (with John Litton QC) on a successful judicial review of the Secretary of State’s decision on housing land supply, the Secretary of State consented to judgment following receipt of the statement of facts and grounds.
  • Y Crwys Village Green Inquiry: appeared for landowner responding to village green application in the centre of Y Crwys village.
  • Perrott (and Ors) v Perry: appeared in First Tier (Property Chamber) Tribunal on a contested application for determination of premium payable for enfranchisement of a building under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993.
  • Serpes v City of London [2017] EWHC 1241 (Ch): successfully resisted an appeal in the High Court brought by a ratepayer in respect of unoccupied commercial property rates.

Matthew is a member of the UK Environmental Law Association, the Planning Bar Association, the Property Bar Association, and the Procurement Lawyers Association.

Planning

Matthew has a wide planning practice encompassing issues across the spectrum of town and country planning and including plan-making, development control, enforcement, and infrastructure delivery. Since becoming a tenant at Landmark he has appeared regularly in the planning court on several occasions and been involved in complex inquiries of range of kinds and scales.

He is a contributor to Garner’s Environmental Law in relation to which he writes the chapter on Strategic Environmental Assessment (with Charles Banner) and is the editor of the Environment section of the Civil Court Practice 2017 (The Green Book). This reflects his particular interest in the environmental aspects of planning work in which respect he has worked on issues relating to EIA, SEA, land contamination, the Water Framework Directive and Habitats Directive.

He regularly advises in relation to neighbourhood plans and has been instructed by a number of parish councils to appear at call-in inquiries and oppose grants of development contrary to made and emerging neighbourhood plans.

High Court work: 

  • R (Shirley) v SSCLG (CO/690/2017) acting (with Reuben Taylor QC) for a developer in response to a judicial review alleging that the Secretary of State’s refusal to call in an application was in breach of the Air Quality Directive.
  • R (Gleeson Homes) v SSCLG (CO/2204/2017): acted (with John Litton QC) on a successful judicial review of the Secretary of State’s decision on housing land supply, the Secretary of State consented to judgment following receipt of the statement of facts and grounds.
  • R (Moody) v SSCLG (CO/4322/2016): acted for Longworth Parish Council on challenge brought by developer to Secretary of State’s decision to call in a planning decision in the area of the Neighbourhood Plan promoted by the Parish Council. The developer withdrew its claim.
  • R (Khan Sherwani) v SSCLG (CO/2983/2016): appeared for a local planning authority to successfully resist s.289 challenge at permission hearing in the High Court.
  • R (Higgs) v LB Hackney (CO/2366/2016): obtained an out of hours injunction to prohibit a local authority from taking direct action under s.178 of the TCPA 1990 and appeared for the Claimant in the subsequent application for permission for judicial review.
  • R (Friends of the Earth) v Welsh Ministers [2015] P.T.S.R. D28: Appeared (with Alex Goodman) for Friends of the Earth in a judicial review of the decision of the Welsh Ministers to adopt a plan to build a new motorway through the Gwent levels to the south of Newport (on grounds relating to SEA).
  • R (Howard) v Wigan Council [2015] Env. L.R. D5: Appearing for the claimant in a judicial review of the decision of Wigan Council to permit a development of 39 houses on a contaminated site. The case also

Criminal court work:

  • Matthew regularly appears for defendants and for local authorities in the magistrates’ court in relation to prosecutions for failure to comply with enforcement notices, breach of condition and of unauthorised advertising. In this capacity he also frequently advises on issues related to the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.

Plan-making and Infrastructure work:

  • Airports Commission Process (Heathrow Third Runway): Matthew is currently advising Gatwick Airports Limited as part of a team of Landmark Counsel (Neil King QCReuben Taylor QC and Robert Walton) on the Government’s draft Airports NPS.
  • Cheshire East Local Plan Examination: appearing for Save Macclesfield Green Belt over 7 days of hearings into the Cheshire East Local Plan.
  • Walsall MBC Site Allocation Document and Area Action Plan: Advising Walsall Metropolitan Borough Council (with James Maurici QC) in relation to habitats issues arising around promotion of local plans.

Inquiry work:

  • Proposed residential development at Land South of Weston Road: appeared as sole counsel for Great Horwood Parish Council in a four day call-in inquiry into a housing development brought forward by Taylor Wimpey, at which the successful Parish Council was the sole main party arguing for refusal. Key issues included landscape impact, conflict with Neighbourhood Plan, evidence for local and neighbourhood housing need.
  • Y Crwys Village Green Inquiry: appeared for landowner responding to village green application in the centre of Y Crwys village. Key issues included the interrelation of common land and village green legislation and rights of access under the Law of Property Act 1925.
  • Enforcement appeal at 89 Martindale Road, TW4: appearance for a homeowner on a successful ground d appeal relating to an outbuilding constructed within the curtilage of his home.
  • Ealing Filmworks Scheme CPO: appeared for London Borough of Ealing (as Promoting Authority) on a ten day inquiry into a CPO brought forward to enable the Land Securities’ mixed use leisure, retail and commercial scheme to be built (with Neil King QC). Key issues included the benefits which the scheme would deliver and whether an alternative to the CPO had been properly considered.
  • Frandon Hotel enforcement appeal: appeared for the successful appellant against an enforcement notice who was able to establish a 10-year lawful use of a hotel as a hostel for the homeless.
  • Enforcement appeal at Worldwide Butterfly Site: appeared for West Dorset District Council on a two-day inquiry into an enforcement appeal brought under grounds (a), (c), (d), (f) and (g).
  • Brentford Football Stadium CPO Inquiry: appeared for First Industrial Ltd, statutory objectors to the Brentford Football Stadium CPO, over a nine-day inquiry (as junior to Neil King QC).
  • Appearing for appellants in a number of appeals against an enforcement notice under s.174 TCPA 1990, including at public inquiries.

On the advisory side, Matthew advises NGOs, developers, local residents and planning authorities on all aspects of planning law. Recent advices relate to enforcement appeals, neighbourhood plans, heritage impacts, permitted development rights, DCO procedure, fracking, the interpretation of planning permissions, and policy including national parks, AONBs, wind turbines, affordable housing and viability assessment. He has experience of drafting grounds and planning appeals statements.

Matthew is a contributor to Leigh Day’s Guide to Fracking Challenges and, prior to joining Landmark, worked as a paralegal for a leading firm of environmental claimant solicitors.

He has recently given talks on Neighbourhood Plans and Enabling Development and Heritage (with Sasha White QC) and provided training to local authority planning members on the nuts and bolts of planning law.

Property and Leasehold Enfranchisement Law

Matthew has a busy property practice with a particular focus on leasehold extensions and enfranchisement and regularly appears in the county court and First Tier Residential Property Tribunal.

Before joining Landmark Matthew acted as a duty advisor in residential possession claims at Willesden County Court. During pupillage he also gained experience of a wide range of other property matters including restrictive covenants, boundary disputes, landlord and tenant claims (both residential and commercial), forfeiture actions, village greens, and a variety of issues in leasehold enfranchisement and property valuation.

Matthew regularly appears in the county courts on a wide range of possession and 1954 Act matters, including a claims against trespassers and forfeiture proceedings. He has sought and obtained vesting orders under Part III of the 1987 Act and under s.44 of the Trustee Act 1925. He also has experience of dealing with bankruptcy applications, and with applications for charging orders and orders for the sale of a property.

Recent appearances have included:

  • Y Crwys Village Green Inquiry: appeared for landowner responding to village green application in the centre of Y Crwys village.
  • Larwood v Kinnish (B00SS482): appeared for claimant seeking possession of land and facing a counterclaim for adverse possession.
  • Appearances in the county court in full trials relating to boundary disputes, possession, rights of way, the existence of agricultural tenancies and harassments claims.
  • Appearances in the First Tier Tribunal (Residential Tribunal) in relation to a contested application for a declaration of breach of covenant.

Matthew’s advisory and drafting work has raised issues across property law including forfeiture, mortgages, party wall/boundary issues, property injunctions, severance, land registration, and the enforceability of section 106 agreements.

He frequently gives talks and seminars and is currently organising (with Matthew Fraser) a Landmark Chambers five-part series covering the “Nuts and Bolts of Property Law”.

Leasehold Enfranchisement

Prior to starting practice, Matthew was a pupil to Tom Jefferies and worked on a number of leasehold enfranchisement matters including a contested valuation hearing of a high value house in Mayfair, a complex enfranchisement of blocks of flats in West Kensington, and a restrictive covenant dispute in Westminster.

Recent enfranchisement and leasehold extension work includes successful appearances in the FTT in a variety of 1993 Act claims (relating to lease terms, purchase price and other issues), and in the county court in relation to a contested notice of claim under the 1967 Act. His advisory work often involves reviewing notices and helping to untangle the knotty procedural traps which the legislation specializes in. In this context, he often works with both solicitors and valuers.

Matthew is instructed regularly in relation to all areas of leasehold enfranchisement law and strategy and assist with drafting, advisory work and with advocacy in the Tribunal. He has recently given a talk in chambers on the validity of notices and wider questions of strategy and procedure under Part 1 of the 1993 Act. Notable recent work includes:

  • Multiple appearances in the Residential Property Tribunal for tenants seeking determination of the price to be paid for the freehold under the 1993 Act. A recent example was Perrott (and Ors) v Perry in which he successfully cross examined the respondent’s valuer, obtaining an acceptance that his client’s valuer had given a more useful valuation of the premium.
  • Advising clients in the context of a county court challenge to the validity of a tenants’ notice under the 1967 Act on the question of whether a property was a house reasonably so called.
  • Advising clients in relation to the time limits applicable under the 1993 and 1967 Acts.
  • Appearing in the Residential Property Tribunal for tenants seeking determination of the terms of a new lease to be granted under s.42 of the 1993 Act.

He is a member of the Property Bar Association.

Public and Environment (including EU)

Matthew’s public law practice is broad one, including a wide range of fields including the environment, social security, unlawful detention and immigration, public land disposal, and health care law.

He is a contributor to Garner’s Environmental Law in relation to which he writes the chapter on Strategic Environmental Assessment (with Charles Banner) and is the editor of the Environment section of the Civil Court Practice 2017 (The Green Book). He also has a particular interest in public procurement, in which respect he recently appeared (with David Smith) for the claimants in a litigation in the High Court concerning a £108m development agreement for the regeneration of Farnham town centre.

He regularly drafts claims and has appeared in the Administrative Court on a number occasions. He also has experience of drafting summary grounds of resistance for central government through GLD’s baby barrister scheme. Recent high court work includes:

  • R (Shirley) v SSCLG (CO/690/2017) acting (with Reuben Taylor QC) for a developer in response to a judicial review alleging that the Secretary of State’s refusal to call in an application was in breach of the Air Quality Directive.
  • Wylde v Waverley BC [2017] EWHC 466 (Admin): appeared (with David Smith) for the claimants in public procurement litigation in the High Court concerning a £108m development agreement for the regeneration of Farnham town centre.
  • R (Friends of the Earth) v Welsh Ministers [2015] P.T.S.R. D28: Appeared (with Alex Goodman) for Friends of the Earth in a judicial review of the decision of the Welsh Ministers to adopt a plan to build a new motorway through the Gwent levels to the south of Newport (on grounds relating to SEA).

Outside of the High Court, Matthew regularly appears in the First Tier Tribunal (IAC) and (Social Security) and in the Upper Tribunal (IAC) (including a recent successful urgent application to stay removal directions), and on a substantive appeal. His advisory practice is very broad and has involved working for NGOs such as Friends of the Earth in investigating potential challenges especially in relating to fracking and other forms of mineral exploration and exploitation.

As a former paralegal at a leading firm of environmental claimant solicitors he has a practical and hands on approach to the demands of bringing a judicial review claim, and has recently given two talks on “How to Get a JR Claim off the Ground”.

Rating and Compulsory Purchase Work

Matthew has a busy rating practice and regularly appears in the magistrates’ court and advises in relation to council tax and non-domestic rates. Recent work includes:

  • Serpes v City of London [2017] EWHC 1241 (Ch): successfully resisted an appeal in the High Court brought by a ratepayer in respect of unoccupied commercial property rates.
  • Regular appearances in the magistrates’ court for rate payers on cases raising questions in relation to charitable exemption; empty property relief; unoccupied property exemptions; rateable occupation; and jurisdictional questions.
  • He is currently acting for Aldi in relation to a valuation appeal which raises interesting issues as to the weight to be given to a lease, granted at a reverse premium.

His compulsory purchase practice involves both advisory and inquiry work, in which respect he has previously appeared at:

  • Ealing Filmworks Scheme CPO: appeared for London Borough of Ealing (as Promoting Authority) on a ten day inquiry into a CPO brought forward to enable the Land Securities’ mixed use leisure, retail and commercial scheme to be built (with Neil King QC). Key issues included the benefits which the scheme would deliver and whether an alternative to the CPO had been properly considered.
  • Brentford Football Stadium CPO Inquiry: appeared for First Industrial Ltd, statutory objectors to the Brentford Football Stadium CPO, over a nine-day inquiry (as junior to Neil King QC).

Matthew’s practice frequently involves issues of valuation (whether in the context of CPO, rates, leasehold enfranchisement, or commercial rent review).

Qualifications

Academic

  • 2006-9: BA (Hons) History, Durham University (First)
  • 2009-10: MSt Late Antique History, Art and Archaeology, Oxford University (Distinction)
  • 2010-11: Graduate Diploma in Law, Oxford Brookes (Distinction)

Professional

  • 2011-12: Bar Professional Training Course, Kaplan Law School (Very Competent)

Inquiries

89 Martindale Road, TW4

24/11/2015

Appearing for Appellant at inquiry into appeal against an enforcement notice under ground (d).

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Inquiries

Land at Worldwide Butterflies Site, West Dorset

16/11/2015

Appearing for West Dorset District Council over two day inquiry into an appeal against enforcement notice under grounds (a), (c), (d), (f) and (g).

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Inquiries

Brentford Community Football Stadium CPO Inquiry

08/09/2015

Today the inquiry into the confirmation of a compulsory purchase order made by the London Borough of Hounslow for the provision of a new, 20,000 seat community football stadium for Brentford Football Club opened. The Club moved to its current stadium in Griffin Park, Brentford in 1904, and has long since outgrown this location. The CPO if confirmed will enable the regeneration of a site that is principally used for unattractive industrial and related uses, between Kew Bridge and the elevated M4 motorway. The redevelopment will include some 910 new homes, which will assist in enabling the development, as well as a hotel and other uses. The Club’s proposals have been lauded as bringing significant inward investment with regenerative benefits into a relatively isolated area of Brentford.

The inquiry is expected to run for two weeks.

James Maurici QC and Andrew Byass are appearing for the London Borough of Hounslow.

Russell Harris QC is acting for the Club.

Neil King QC and Matthew Dale-Harris are appearing for First Industrial Limited, one of the objectors to the CPO.

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Inquiries

Ealing Filmworks CPO

14/04/2015

A public inquiry opens today into a major compulsory purchase proposal by the London Borough of Ealing and Land Securities. The CPO aims to assemble a site for a cinema, shopping, offices and housing.

Neil King QC and Matthew Dale-Harris are representing Ealing and Land Securities, Nathalie Lieven QC is for the Empire Cinema group and Rupert Warren QC is for Aberdeen Asset Management.

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Inquiries

89 Martindale Road, TW4

24/11/2015

Appearing for Appellant at inquiry into appeal against an enforcement notice under ground (d).

:

Inquiries

Land at Worldwide Butterflies Site, West Dorset

16/11/2015

Appearing for West Dorset District Council over two day inquiry into an appeal against enforcement notice under grounds (a), (c), (d), (f) and (g).

:

Inquiries

Brentford Community Football Stadium CPO Inquiry

08/09/2015

Today the inquiry into the confirmation of a compulsory purchase order made by the London Borough of Hounslow for the provision of a new, 20,000 seat community football stadium for Brentford Football Club opened. The Club moved to its current stadium in Griffin Park, Brentford in 1904, and has long since outgrown this location. The CPO if confirmed will enable the regeneration of a site that is principally used for unattractive industrial and related uses, between Kew Bridge and the elevated M4 motorway. The redevelopment will include some 910 new homes, which will assist in enabling the development, as well as a hotel and other uses. The Club’s proposals have been lauded as bringing significant inward investment with regenerative benefits into a relatively isolated area of Brentford.

The inquiry is expected to run for two weeks.

James Maurici QC and Andrew Byass are appearing for the London Borough of Hounslow.

Russell Harris QC is acting for the Club.

Neil King QC and Matthew Dale-Harris are appearing for First Industrial Limited, one of the objectors to the CPO.

:

Inquiries

Ealing Filmworks CPO

14/04/2015

A public inquiry opens today into a major compulsory purchase proposal by the London Borough of Ealing and Land Securities. The CPO aims to assemble a site for a cinema, shopping, offices and housing.

Neil King QC and Matthew Dale-Harris are representing Ealing and Land Securities, Nathalie Lieven QC is for the Empire Cinema group and Rupert Warren QC is for Aberdeen Asset Management.

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