R (SAVE) v Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Others  EWHC 979 (Admin)
HHJ Pelling QC today gave judgment on an application for judicial review in which SAVE sought a declaration that paragraphs 2(1) (a) – (d) of the Town and Country Planning (Demolition – Description of Buildings) Direction 1995 (“the Demolition Direction”) were unlawful and should not be given effect and that in consequence planning permission was and is required for the demolition of Mitchell’s Brewery, Brewery Lane, Lancaster (“the Brewery”) part of which building had recently been listed.
SAVE argued that paragraphs 2(1) (a) – (d) of the Demolition Direction was contrary to the requirements of the Environmental Impact Assessment Directive (85/337/EEC) (as amended) (“the EIA Directive”) because the EIA Directive requires an Environmental Impact Assessment to be carried out prior to the demolition of a building.
The learned Judge ruled that the legal issue was academic on the facts of the case but even if he was wrong on that point demolition per se was not a “project” subject to the EIA Directive. He considered this view to be supported by the obiter remarks of the House of Lords in R (Edwards) v. Environment Agency  UKHL 22  1 All E.R. 57.
James Maurici appeared for the Secretary of State