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Matthew Fraser

Call: 2013

Practice Summary

Matthew has a broad practice in public law, planning law and environmental law. He also has expertise in property law.

Matthew has been ranked among the top barristers in planning law under the age of 35 in the Planning Magazine’s 2018, 2019 and 2020 Legal Surveys.

He read Philosophy, Politics and Economics at the University of Oxford (Balliol College), before completing an LLM (Qualifying Law Degree) at Birkbeck, University of London, and the BPTC at City University.

Recent highlights of his practice include:

  • RR v SSWP [2019] 1 W.L.R. 6430 – Major constitutional case in the Supreme Court about what remedy a tribunal can grant to victims of the bedroom tax – acted for the successful appellant.
  • Dover DC & China Gateway International Ltd v CPRE Kent [2018] 1 W.L.R. 108 – Leading case in the Supreme Court concerning the duty on local authorities to give reasons for planning decisions.
  • Aireborough Neighbourhood Development Forum v Leeds City Council [2020] EWHC 45 (Admin) – Whether unincorporated associations have legal capacity to issue proceedings.
  • Monkhill Ltd v SSHCLG [2020] J.P.L. 175 – Meaning of policies providing a “clear reason for refusal” in National Planning Policy Framework para. 11(d) (appeal to Court of Appeal pending).
  • Peel Investments (North) Ltd v SSHCLG [2020] J.P.L. 278 – Meaning of “out-of-date” in National Planning Policy Framework para. 11(d) (appeal to Court of Appeal pending).
  • Tower Hamlets LBC v SSHCLG [2020] P.T.S.R. 111 – Interpretation of National Planning Policy Framework para. 196 on harm to heritage assets.
  • HJ Banks & Company Ltd v SSHCLG [2019] P.T.S.R. 668 – a challenge to the decision to refuse planning permission for a new open-cast coal mine (acting for Friends of the Earth).
  • William Davis Ltd v Charnwood BC [2018] J.P.L. 549 – acted for five major housebuilders in a successful challenge concerning the lawfulness of a Supplementary Planning Document housing mix policy.
  • RJ, GMcL and CS v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions v RJ (PIP) [2017] UKUT 105 (AAC) –  three-judge panel of the Upper Tribunal in a case concerning the interpretation of the meaning of “safely” in the Personal Independence Payment Regulations 2013 (acting for the National Deaf Children’s Society).
  • Eatherley v Camden LBC [2017] P.T.S.R. 288 – key case defining the scope of permitted development rights for basements (acted for the successful claimant).

More information on specific practice areas can be found under the ‘Expertise’ tab.

Planning

Matthew has been consistently ranked among the top barristers in planning law under the age of 35 in the Planning Magazine’s 2018, 2019 and 2020 Legal Surveys. His advocacy and advisory practice extends to all areas of planning law.

Current planning court cases include:

  • Keep Bourne End Green v Wycombe Council (CO/3809/2019) – 2-day s.113 challenge to Wycombe Local Plan, to be heard in 2020.
  • Aireborough Neighbourhood Development Forum v Leeds City Council (CO/3279/2019) – 2-day rolled-up hearing of s.113 challenge to Leeds Site Allocations Plan, judgment awaited.
  • R (Sarah Finch) v Surrey County Council (2020/0351) – judicial review of grant of planning permission for oil wells, appeal pending to Court of Appeal.
  • Craven District Council v SSHCLG (CO/58/2020) – s.288 challenge to an Inspector’s decision to grant planning permission for housing development, awaiting oral permission hearing.
  • Elmbridge District Council v R (Davison) (C1/2019/1425) – judicial review concerning the materiality of previous planning decisions quashed by the court, pending Court of Appeal hearing.
  • R (Asda Stores Limited) v Leeds City Council (2020/0059) – judicial review concerning the meaning of retail policy in the National Planning Policy Framework, pending Court of Appeal hearing.
  • Rectory Homes v SSHCLG (CO/4682/2019) – s.288 challenge to Inspector’s decision concerning approach to C2 and C3 use classes, pending substantive hearing.
  • Abbey Properties v East Cambridgeshire District Council (CO/1007/2020) – judicial review of decision to proceed to referendum of Witchford Neighbourhood Plan, awaiting permission decision.

Recent planning court cases include:

  • R (Advearse) v. Dorset Council [2020] EWHC 807 (Admin) – judicial review of decision to grant planning permission for major development in the Dorset AONB.
  • Aireborough Neighbourhood Development Forum v Leeds City Council [2020] EWHC 45 (Admin) – Whether unincorporated associations have legal capacity to issue proceedings. 
  • Monkhill Ltd v SSHCLG [2020] J.P.L. 175 – Meaning of policies providing a “clear reason for refusal” in National Planning Policy Framework para. 11(d) (appeal to Court of Appeal pending).
  • Peel Investments (North) Ltd v SSHCLG [2020] J.P.L. 278 – Meaning of “out-of-date” in National Planning Policy Framework para. 11(d) (appeal to Court of Appeal pending).
  • Tower Hamlets LBC v SSHCLG [2020] P.T.S.R. 111 – Interpretation of National Planning Policy Framework para. 196 on harm to heritage assets.
  • Xyan Holdings v SSHCLG [2019] EWHC 2907 (Admin) – s.288 challenge raising issues of interpretation of affordable housing policy in the London Plan and local plan.
  • R (Locke) v Newcastle City Council (CO/4426/2019) – permission refused in judicial review of a grant of planning permission for 1,200 homes in Newcastle Great Park.
  • HJ Banks & Company Ltd v SSHCLG [2019] P.T.S.R. 668 – a challenge to the decision to refuse planning permission for a new open-cast coal mine (acting for Friends of the Earth).
  • R (Gorst Energy) v East Devon District Council (CO/4635/2019) – challenge to a Breach of Condition Notice.
  • Dover DC & China Gateway International Ltd v CPRE Kent [2018] 1 W.L.R. 108 – Leading case in the Supreme Court concerning the duty on local authorities to give reasons for planning decisions.
  • William Davis Ltd v Charnwood BC [2018] J.P.L. 549 – acted for five major housebuilders in a successful challenge concerning the lawfulness of a Supplementary Planning Document housing mix policy.
  • Eatherley v Camden LBC [2017] P.T.S.R. 288 – key case defining the scope of permitted development rights for basements (acted for the successful claimant).
  • Basildon Council v Whiting (HQ18X03326) – successful multi-hearing proceedings in High Court seeking an injunction to restrain unauthorised development.

Recent planning inquiries and hearings include:

  • Oyster Trestles, Whitstable – 3-week public inquiry acting for Whitstable Oyster Company appealing an Enforcement Notice seeking removal of oyster trestles on Whitstable foreshore – March – April 2020
  • Land at the former Redcar Steel Works, Redcar – 3-week public inquiry concerning the South Tees Development Corporation’s CPO for major industrial regeneration scheme – February 2020
  • Land East of Loxwood Road, Alfold – 4-day inquiry concerning a housing scheme in the countryside of Waverley – January 2020
  • Missanda, Wells Lane, Ascot – 1 day hearing concerning an appeal against refusal to discharge planning conditions for housing scheme – January 2020
  • Holly House, Harpsden – 8 day inquiry concerning a property in the Chilterns AONB – April, September & December 2019
  • Swanley Town Centre Regeneration, Swanley – 4 day inquiry acting for the successful appellant seeking permission for mixed-use regeneration – June 2019
  • Waterside Holiday Park, Essex – 3 day inquiry acting for the successful local planning authority resisting an LDC appeal relating to a caravan park – March 2019
  • Land south of Gloucester Road, Thornbury – 4 week inquiry for Rule 6 party (Tortworth Estate / St Modwen) opposing 370-home scheme – January to March 2019
  • Former Kumor Nursery, Dover – three day inquiry for LPA successfully resisting appeal concerning 60-home scheme – December 2018
  • Whitecap Mushroom Farm, Mayland – two day inquiry for a Lawful Development Certificate appeal, acting for Maldon DC – November 2018
  • Land East of Park Road, Didcot – four-day inquiry concerning 135 homes in South Oxfordshire, acting for the developer – May 2018
  • Racton View, Chichester – one day enforcement inquiry acting for Chichester District Council concerning a chicken farm – May 2018
  • Earl Road, Handforth – five-week inquiry acting for a retail developer in a called-in application in Handforth Dean, Cheshire East – January to April 2018
  • Worsley Greenway, Salford – four-week inquiry acting for Manchester City Council resisting a 600-dwelling (plus marina, retail and café) appeal – February to March 2018
  • South Eden Park Road, Bromley – four-day circa-100 home inquiry, acting for Bromley Council – January 2018
  • Flatts Lane, Redcar – acted for a housebuilder in a successful appeal concerning a 400-home scheme – April 2017
  • King v Maldon DC – acted for the council in successfully resisting an enforcement appeal raising issues of deliberate concealment – March 2017
  • Gorstyhill “Wychwood Village Extension”, Crewe – acted for Cheshire East Council successfully resisting a recovered appeal concerning a 900-home scheme – February 2017
  • Fontwell Avenue, Fontwell – acted for the successful developer in an inquiry concerning a called-in application for a 400-home residential and employment scheme in West Sussex, raising issues of conflict with made and emerging neighbourhood plans – November 2016
  • Cheshire East Local Plan examination hearings – acting for Cheshire East Council – September to October 2016
  • Olney Rugby Club footpath inquiry – successfully represented a rugby club in a public inquiry to determine the existence of a right of way over the club’s land – May 2016
  • Ahmed v Brent Council – acted for successful appellant in an enforcement inquiry concerning issues of deliberate concealment – November 2015

Matthew also regularly advises developers, local government, community groups and individuals about a wide range of planning issues. In addition to his civil practice, has regular experience prosecuting and defending in criminal planning enforcement proceedings, as well as acting in appeals against section 215 notices, in the Magistrates’ Court and the Crown Court.

Matthew is a Contributing Editor to the Encyclopedia of Planning Law and Practice, and a member of the Planning and Environmental Bar Association and the UK Environmental Lawyers’ Association.

Environment

Matthew is an experienced environmental lawyer. Much of his planning work engages environmental issues including climate change, air quality, ecology and biodiversity, waste and landfill, land contamination, and arboriculture.

Recent work includes:

  • R (Sarah Finch) v Surrey County Council (2020/0351) – judicial review of grant of planning permission for oil wells, appeal pending to Court of Appeal. 
  • Abbey Properties v East Cambridgeshire District Council (CO/1007/2020) – judicial review of decision to proceed to referendum of Witchford Neighbourhood Plan (challenge to designation of land as Local Green Space), awaiting permission decision.
  • HJ Banks & Company Ltd v SSHCLG [2019] P.T.S.R. 668 – a challenge to the decision to refuse planning permission for a new open-cast coal mine (acting for Friends of the Earth).
  • Dillner v Sheffield City Council [2016] Env. L.R. 31 – acted for the successful interested party resisting a judicial review concerning the lawfulness of tree-felling highway maintenance operations.
  • Jim 2 Ltd v Walsall MBC – acted for the council in a two-week public inquiry to determine a contaminated land appeal under Part IIA of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 (the second ever inquiry in the history of the regime).
  • Advising landfill operators concerning the Environment Agency’s regulatory charging regime.

He is a member of the UK Environmental Lawyers Association.

Public

Matthew has a broad practice across a range of areas within public law. While much of his work relates to planning and environmental law as sub-categories of public law, his practice also extends to a wide selection of public law fields including immigration, social security, healthcare, human rights, protest, civil liberties.

Recent work includes:

  • RR v SSWP [2019] 1 W.L.R. 6430 – Major constitutional case in the Supreme Court about what remedy a tribunal can grant to victims of the bedroom tax – acted for the successful appellant.
  • Lin De Pan v SSHD (CO/3467/2019) / Kaitey v SSHD (CO/4279/2019) – Acting in a series of similar claims challenging the lawfulness of bail conditions in circumstances where the claimant cannot lawfully be detained.
  • Dover DC & China Gateway International Ltd v CPRE Kent [2018] 1 W.L.R. 108 – Leading case in the Supreme Court concerning the duty on local authorities to give reasons for planning decisions.
  • Aireborough Neighbourhood Development Forum v Leeds City Council [2020] EWHC 45 (Admin) – Whether unincorporated associations have legal capacity to issue proceedings.
  • HJ Banks & Company Ltd v SSHCLG [2019] P.T.S.R. 668 – a challenge to the decision to refuse planning permission for a new open-cast coal mine (acting for Friends of the Earth).
  • RJ, GMcL and CS v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions v RJ (PIP) [2017] UKUT 105 (AAC) –  three-judge panel of the Upper Tribunal in a case concerning the interpretation of the meaning of “safely” in the Personal Independence Payment Regulations 2013 (acting for the National Deaf Children’s Society). 
  • Antoniades (No.2) & Others v The Administrator of the Sovereign Base Areas of Akrotiri and Dhekelia – Acting for the Administrator in the Sovereign Base Areas in Cyprus, defending a long-running judicial review brought by several hundred local employees concerning civil service pay reductions.

He has also recently been acting with David Lock QC in two significant healthcare cases:

  • Advising an NHS Trust in respect of issues arising following the judgment in R (Bayer Plc and Novartis) v NHS Darlington Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCG) & Ors [2018] EWHC 2465 (Admin);
  • Advising a care home provider concerning a proposed judicial review of a local authority purporting to exercise a regulatory function reserved to the Care Quality Commission.

He has considerable expertise in planning and environmental law (see separate tabs), and regularly advises on cases that combine public and property law.

Matthew regularly acts for claimants in judicial review claims challenging detention and deportation, and he also acts for appellants in the First-Tier Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chamber) and in the Upper Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chamber). He has also undertaken a significant amount of work as a “Junior Junior” drafting summary grounds of defence for the Home Office.

He regularly acts pro bono, in particular for the AIRE Centre and the National Deaf Children’s Society.

Prior to joining Landmark Chambers, Matthew was a Legal Assistant at the European Council of Refugees and Exiles in Brussels, Belgium. He has also volunteered for a number of legal charities in London, including the Free Representation Unit, the Afghan and Central Asia Association, the National Centre for Domestic Violence, the Bar Pro Bono Unit, Southwark Law Centre and the Refugee Children’s Rights Project.

Property

Matthew has a property practice with particular expertise in cases that require knowledge of planning, environmental and public law. Recent work includes:

  • Acting for a high-profile UK retailer in injunction proceedings against trespassers across a number of different sites.
  • Acting for a major gas transporter in a successful urgent application in the High Court for an interim injunction preventing development works in the vicinity of a high-pressure pipeline.
  • Successfully representing a group of Right-to-Buy leaseholders in resisting a £50,000 service charge demand per flat in the First-Tier Tribunal: see News Item.
  • An arbitration, led by Katharine Holland QC, over the interpretation of compensation clauses in a pipeline easement deed.

Cases

  • R (Advearse) v. Dorset Council [2020] EWHC 807 (Admin)
  • Keep Bourne End Green v Wycombe Council (CO/3809/2019)
  • Aireborough Neighbourhood Development Forum v Leeds City Council (CO/3279/2019)
  • R (Sarah Finch) v Surrey County Council (2020/0351)
  • Craven District Council v SSHCLG (CO/58/2020)
  • Elmbridge District Council v R (Davison) (C1/2019/1425)
  • R (Asda Stores Limited) v Leeds City Council (2020/0059)
  • Rectory Homes v SSHCLG (CO/4682/2019)
  • Abbey Properties v East Cambridgeshire District Council (CO/1007/2020)
  • Advearse v Dorset Council (CO/2277/2019)
  • Aireborough Neighbourhood Development Forum v Leeds City Council [2020] EWHC 45 (Admin)
  • Monkhill Ltd v SSHCLG [2020] J.P.L. 175
  • Peel Investments (North) Ltd v SSHCLG [2020] J.P.L. 278
  • Tower Hamlets LBC v SSHCLG [2020] P.T.S.R. 111
  • RR v SSWP [2019] 1 W.L.R. 6430
  • Xyan Holdings v SSHCLG [2019] EWHC 2907 (Admin)
  • R (Locke) v Newcastle City Council (CO/4426/2019)
  • Lin De Pan v SSHD (CO/3467/2019)
  • Kaitey v SSHD (CO/4279/2019)
  • HJ Banks & Company Ltd v SSHCLG [2019] P.T.S.R. 668
  • R (Gorst Energy) v East Devon District Council (CO/4635/2019)
  • Dover DC & China Gateway International Ltd v CPRE Kent [2018] 1 W.L.R. 108
  • William Davis Ltd v Charnwood BC [2018] J.P.L. 549
  • Eatherley v Camden LBC [2017] P.T.S.R. 288
  • RJ, GMcL and CS v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions v RJ (PIP) [2017] UKUT 105 (AAC)
  • Basildon Council v Whiting (HQ18X03326)
  • Dillner v Sheffield City Council [2016] Env. L.R. 31
  • Antoniades (No.2) & Others v The Administrator of the Sovereign Base Areas of Akrotiri and Dhekelia (1/2015, 4/2015, 5/2015)

Qualifications

  • Balliol College, University of Oxford (BA, Philosophy, Politics and Economics)
  • Birkbeck, University of London (Distinction, LLM Qualifying Law Degree)
  • City University London (Outstanding, BPTC)

Scholarships and Awards

  • Inner Temple Major Scholarship
  • The William Rose Memorial Prize for Excellence in Drafting (for the highest mark in the BPTC drafting
assessment)
  • The Sibel Dedezade Pro Bono Award (for exceptional pro bono work)
  • Winner of the Human Rights Lawyers’ Association Judicial Review Competition 2013
  • Winner of the Access to Justice Foundation Student Essay Competition 2013
  • Highest ranked UK team, International Monroe E. Price Media Law Moot
  • Balliol College Markby Exhibitioner

Inquiries

Oyster Trestles, Whitstable

01/03/2020

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Inquiries

Land at the former Redcar Steel Works, Redcar

01/02/2020

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Inquiries

Land East of Loxwood Road, Alfold

01/01/2020

:

Inquiries

Missanda, Wells Lane, Ascot

01/01/2020

:

Inquiries

Swanley Town Centre Regeneration, Swanley

04/06/2019

:

Inquiries

Holly House, Harpsden

02/04/2019

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Inquiries

Waterside Holiday Park, Essex

12/03/2019

:

Inquiries

Land South of Gloucester Road, Thornbury

21/01/2019

:

Inquiries

Former Kumor Nursery, Sandwich

04/12/2018

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Inquiries

Whitecap Mushroom Farm, Maldon

20/11/2018

:

Inquiries

Land East of Park Road, Didcot

22/05/2018

:

Inquiries

Racton View, Westbourne

01/05/2018

:

Inquiries

Broadoak, Worsley

20/02/2018

:

Inquiries

Handforth Dean Retail Park, Cheshire

23/01/2018

:

Inquiries

South Eden Park Road, Bromley

09/01/2018

:

Inquiries

324 Philip Lane, Hackney

05/09/2017

:

Inquiries

Potters Farm, Bromley

05/07/2017

:

Inquiries

Flatts Lane, Redcar

25/04/2017

:

Inquiries

Oakfield Farm, Essex

14/03/2017

:

Inquiries

Gorstyhill ‘Wychwood Village Extension’, Crewe

01/02/2017

The Secretary of State has dismissed a recovered appeal against Cheshire East Council’s refusal of outline planning permission for up to 900 homes and a range of employment, education and retail facilities on a former golf course near Crewe. Between the Inspector’s report and the Secretary of State’s decision, the Council adopted their new Local Plan Strategy and could demonstrate a housing land supply for 5.3 years.

The Secretary of State agreed with the Inspector that the large-scale proposal was clearly contrary to local plan policies restricting development in the open countryside and at the bottom of the settlement hierarchy. The Appellant’s suggestion that the site had been designated for development was based on a misinterpretation of the former local plan proposals map. The proposal was also considered to be premature by the Inspector given the advanced stage of the Local Plan Strategy (in which the site was not allocated) at the time of her report.

The Secretary of State said that “how the future demands of HS2 will be met is a matter for consideration through a development plan and should be afforded no weight in the planning balance”.

Given the former absence of a five-year housing land supply, the Inspector had applied NPPF para. 14 and found that the adverse impacts of granting planning permission would significantly and demonstrably outweigh the benefits of the proposal. The Secretary of State – with 5.3 years supply confirmed under the new Local Plan Strategy – concluded that the proposal was not in accordance with the development plan, and no material considerations indicated that permission should be granted despite that conflict.

A copy of the decision is available here.

Christopher Katkowski QC and Matthew Fraser acted for Cheshire East Council.

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Inquiries

Land East of Fontwell Avenue, Fontwell

01/11/2016

Called-in application.

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Inquiries

Cheshire East Local Plan Examination

27/09/2016

Hearings.

:

Inquiries

Footpath – Carey Way to Footpath 1 near Clifton Bridge, Olney

19/05/2016

Right of way.

:

Inquiries

Recovered Part IIA contaminated land appeal opens

08/12/2015

On Tuesday 8 December 2015 an inquiry opens into an appeal by Jim 2 Limited (“Jim 2”) under section 78L(1) of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 (“the 1990 Act”) against a remediation notice served on it by Walsall Metropolitan Borough Council on 17 March 2015 (“the Remediation Notice”). The Remediation Notice requires Jim 2 to de-contaminate the land enclosed within the domestic curtilages of 69 residential properties, which form part of the Stonegate Housing Estate, Walsall which forms part of the land formerly occupied by the Willenhall Town Gas Works. The contamination case focusses on Benzo(a)pyrene (“B(a)P”). B(a)P is commonly used as an indicator compound for the mixture of compounds found in combustion products like Gas Works waste . B(a)P is a persistent organic pollutant, which has been designated by the International Agency Research on Cancer as a Human Carcinogen (Group 1), which means that the evidence is sufficient to determine that the agent is carcinogenic to humans, as opposed to probably (Group 2A) or possibly (Group 2B) carcinogenic to humans.

The appeal is believed to be only the second ever made to the Secretary of State under s. 78L of the 1990 Act notwithstanding the regime having been in force for 15 years. The Secretary of State has recovered the appeal in recognition of “the potential policy implications for contaminated land law” and in “view of the challenges raised on the application of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 and of the revised Statutory Guidance published in 2012. The appeal is expected to last 2 weeks.

James Maurici QC and Matthew Fraser are appearing for the Council, the enforcing authority.

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Inquiries

Stonegate Housing Estate, Walsall

08/12/2015

Recovered Part IIA contaminated land appeal.

:

Inquiries

37 The Circle, London

24/11/2015

Enforcement appeal.

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Articles and Presentations

Inquiries

Oyster Trestles, Whitstable

01/03/2020

:

Inquiries

Land at the former Redcar Steel Works, Redcar

01/02/2020

:

Inquiries

Land East of Loxwood Road, Alfold

01/01/2020

:

Inquiries

Missanda, Wells Lane, Ascot

01/01/2020

:

Inquiries

Swanley Town Centre Regeneration, Swanley

04/06/2019

:

Inquiries

Holly House, Harpsden

02/04/2019

:

Inquiries

Waterside Holiday Park, Essex

12/03/2019

:

Inquiries

Land South of Gloucester Road, Thornbury

21/01/2019

:

Inquiries

Former Kumor Nursery, Sandwich

04/12/2018

:

Inquiries

Whitecap Mushroom Farm, Maldon

20/11/2018

:

Inquiries

Land East of Park Road, Didcot

22/05/2018

:

Inquiries

Racton View, Westbourne

01/05/2018

:

Inquiries

Broadoak, Worsley

20/02/2018

:

Inquiries

Handforth Dean Retail Park, Cheshire

23/01/2018

:

Inquiries

South Eden Park Road, Bromley

09/01/2018

:

Inquiries

324 Philip Lane, Hackney

05/09/2017

:

Inquiries

Potters Farm, Bromley

05/07/2017

:

Inquiries

Flatts Lane, Redcar

25/04/2017

:

Inquiries

Oakfield Farm, Essex

14/03/2017

:

Inquiries

Gorstyhill ‘Wychwood Village Extension’, Crewe

01/02/2017

The Secretary of State has dismissed a recovered appeal against Cheshire East Council’s refusal of outline planning permission for up to 900 homes and a range of employment, education and retail facilities on a former golf course near Crewe. Between the Inspector’s report and the Secretary of State’s decision, the Council adopted their new Local Plan Strategy and could demonstrate a housing land supply for 5.3 years.

The Secretary of State agreed with the Inspector that the large-scale proposal was clearly contrary to local plan policies restricting development in the open countryside and at the bottom of the settlement hierarchy. The Appellant’s suggestion that the site had been designated for development was based on a misinterpretation of the former local plan proposals map. The proposal was also considered to be premature by the Inspector given the advanced stage of the Local Plan Strategy (in which the site was not allocated) at the time of her report.

The Secretary of State said that “how the future demands of HS2 will be met is a matter for consideration through a development plan and should be afforded no weight in the planning balance”.

Given the former absence of a five-year housing land supply, the Inspector had applied NPPF para. 14 and found that the adverse impacts of granting planning permission would significantly and demonstrably outweigh the benefits of the proposal. The Secretary of State – with 5.3 years supply confirmed under the new Local Plan Strategy – concluded that the proposal was not in accordance with the development plan, and no material considerations indicated that permission should be granted despite that conflict.

A copy of the decision is available here.

Christopher Katkowski QC and Matthew Fraser acted for Cheshire East Council.

:

Inquiries

Land East of Fontwell Avenue, Fontwell

01/11/2016

Called-in application.

:

Inquiries

Cheshire East Local Plan Examination

27/09/2016

Hearings.

:

Inquiries

Footpath – Carey Way to Footpath 1 near Clifton Bridge, Olney

19/05/2016

Right of way.

:

Inquiries

Recovered Part IIA contaminated land appeal opens

08/12/2015

On Tuesday 8 December 2015 an inquiry opens into an appeal by Jim 2 Limited (“Jim 2”) under section 78L(1) of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 (“the 1990 Act”) against a remediation notice served on it by Walsall Metropolitan Borough Council on 17 March 2015 (“the Remediation Notice”). The Remediation Notice requires Jim 2 to de-contaminate the land enclosed within the domestic curtilages of 69 residential properties, which form part of the Stonegate Housing Estate, Walsall which forms part of the land formerly occupied by the Willenhall Town Gas Works. The contamination case focusses on Benzo(a)pyrene (“B(a)P”). B(a)P is commonly used as an indicator compound for the mixture of compounds found in combustion products like Gas Works waste . B(a)P is a persistent organic pollutant, which has been designated by the International Agency Research on Cancer as a Human Carcinogen (Group 1), which means that the evidence is sufficient to determine that the agent is carcinogenic to humans, as opposed to probably (Group 2A) or possibly (Group 2B) carcinogenic to humans.

The appeal is believed to be only the second ever made to the Secretary of State under s. 78L of the 1990 Act notwithstanding the regime having been in force for 15 years. The Secretary of State has recovered the appeal in recognition of “the potential policy implications for contaminated land law” and in “view of the challenges raised on the application of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 and of the revised Statutory Guidance published in 2012. The appeal is expected to last 2 weeks.

James Maurici QC and Matthew Fraser are appearing for the Council, the enforcing authority.

:

Inquiries

Stonegate Housing Estate, Walsall

08/12/2015

Recovered Part IIA contaminated land appeal.

:

Inquiries

37 The Circle, London

24/11/2015

Enforcement appeal.

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