Interpretation of lawful use certificates

Michael Rudd analyses the outcome of a recent case concerning the applicability of the familiar interpretative principles of planning permissions to lawful development certificates. Read more
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Feb 13, 2020

Watchdog calls on ministers to check local authority borrowing framework is fit for purpose amid commercial property investment concerns

Local authority investment in commercial property has called the soundness of the prudential borrowing framework into question and raised concerns about how far the Government can rely on it to support value-for-money decisions.
Feb 13, 2020

Judge dismisses case brought over ownership of village hall, makes restraint order

A judge has dismissed a case brought over the ownership of a village hall as totally without merit and issued an order restraining one litigant from bringing further actions.
Feb 06, 2020

Supreme Court to hear dispute over land gifted to school and whether £1m+ sale funds should go to estate of donor

The Supreme Court has given a county council permission to appeal in a dispute over whether the ownership of land, which was gifted to a school under the School Sites Act 1841, reverted to the donor’s estate when the school ceased to operate from the gifted land.
Feb 06, 2020

Borough declines to comment amid report it will not take legal action over £12m project overspend

Corby Borough Council has refused to confirm or deny local reports that it has dropped legal action over construction of the town’s Cube building.
Feb 05, 2020

Family ordered to pay £160k over “irreparable damage” to scheduled monument

Three individuals found responsible for causing serious damage to a scheduled monument have been ordered to pay a total of £160,000 after being taken to court by Historic England.
Feb 04, 2020

Law firm advises Clarion on acquisition of canal-side property for 66-home scheme

Winckworth Sherwood is representing Clarion on the acquisition of a canal-side property in central Manchester that will be developed into 63 apartments and 3 town houses for sale on a shared ownership basis.
Jan 30, 2020

District council faces making £1.1m refund after business rates challenge by Amazon

Cannock Chase District Council is set to lose around £1.1m in a business rates refund after the Valuation Office Agency (VOA) upheld an appeal by online retailer Amazon.
Jan 30, 2020

High Court rules directors cannot buy assets of their liquidated company on the cheap

The High Court has ruled that company directors cannot buy assets from their liquidated companies at below market value.
Jan 23, 2020

Council wins Upper Tribunal appeal over valuation of museum for business rates purposes

A city council has won an appeal to the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) over how museum properties are valued for business rates purposes.
Jan 23, 2020

Resident wins permission for judicial review challenge over HS2 tunnel design near Euston station

A resident who lives near the planned route of the High Speed 2 (HS2) rail line has won the right to bring a judicial review against its tunnel design under London’s Euston station.


February 07, 2020

Green Space borough-wide preventative injunctions: the view from the Court of Appeal

Steven Woolf examines the Court of Appeal's recent decision and guidance on Green Space borough-wide preventative injunctions.
February 07, 2020

Extending prior-approval time limits by agreement

The High Court has ruled that prior-approval time limits can be extended by agreement. Charles Streeten explains why.
January 29, 2020

A new beginning? – Enfranchisement valuation reform

The Law Commission has now published its report on options to reduce the price payable in lease extension and enfranchisement claims. William Bethune and David Zong analyse its findings.
January 03, 2020

The Electronic Communications Code and interim rights

The Court of Appeal has recently given an important ruling on interim rights under the Electronic Communiciations Code. Jonathan Seitler QC explains the outcome.
December 20, 2019

Public authorities, statutory powers and village greens

Francis Taylor Building comments on a Supreme Court judgment on village greens that will prove hugely significant for landowning public bodies.
December 17, 2019

Social landlords and water charges

A recent ruling in the High Court in a test case on water re-selling has led to claims that local authorities and housing associations could face having to refund millions of pounds to tenants. Simon Kiely and Anna Moon analyse the judgment.
December 13, 2019

Compulsory purchase of ACV-listed public houses

Christopher Cant looks at the lessons to be learned from the recent compulsory purchase of a public house that was listed as an asset of community value (ACV).
December 06, 2019

Climate emergency #4: have you thought about Retrofitting?

Maxim Laithwaite, David Hutton and Nathan Bradberry analyse how local authorities and registered providers can use retrofitting to help deliver on climate emergencies.

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Jan 21, 2020

Court of Appeal rejects council bid for borough-wide injunction, issues guidance on tackling unauthorised encampments

The Court of Appeal has dismissed an appeal by the London Borough of Bromley over a High Court judge’s refusal to grant a borough-wide injunction on encampment at all accessible public spaces in the council’s area.
Jan 20, 2020

Bevan Brittan boosts Leeds office with hire of property disputes partner

Law firm Bevan Brittan has appointed James Teagle as a partner in its property disputes team.
Jan 17, 2020

Councils call for tougher legislation, new powers to tackle business rates avoidance

The Local Government Association has called for tougher legislation in England to tackle business rates avoidance, saying research had shown that the problem is costing local services an estimated £250m a year.
Jan 08, 2020

Council secures injunction to stop proposed “tent city” homeless encampment

Leeds City Council has today (8 January) secured an injunction against a proposed homeless encampment which it claimed would create a “tent city” in a car park.
Jan 08, 2020

Law firm advises borough council on £18.7m acquisition of long leasehold interest in leisure park

Law firm Ashfords has advised Maidstone Borough Council on the acquisition of a long leasehold interest in a leisure park for circa £18.7m.
Dec 31, 2019

Magistrates order homeowner to pay £61,000 over damage to protected tree

A homeowner who damaged a 90-year-old tree so much that it had to be felled has been fined more than £60,000 following a criminal prosecution by Chelmsford City Council.
Dec 13, 2019

Owner of ex-British Legion hall fails in tribunal bid to stop registration as asset of community value

The owner of a former British Legion Hall cannot prevent it from being designated as an asset of community value, the First-Tier Tribunal General Regulatory Chamber has ruled.
Dec 13, 2019

Tribunal backs decision to designate overgrown land as asset of community value

The First-Tier Tribunal has upheld Winchester City Council’s decision to allow an area of overgrown land to be designated as an asset of community value.
Dec 13, 2019

Council loses Upper Tribunal battle over modification of headlease that would allow conversion of 76,000 sq ft office building into 114 flats

Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council must modify the headlease of a former office building to allow for conversion to residential use, the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) has ruled.
Dec 12, 2019

Relief for councils as NHS trusts lose High Court bid to claim £1.5bn charities reduction on business rates

A group of 17 NHS foundation trusts have failed to persuade a High Court judge that they are charities and so eligible for substantial reductions on the non-domestic rates payable on the properties they occupy.
Dec 11, 2019

Supreme Court allows appeals by land-owning public bodies in dispute over statutory incompatibility and village green registration

The Supreme Court has by a 3-2 majority allowed appeals by Lancashire County Council and NHS Property Services over whether statutory incompatibility defeats an application to register land as a town or village green where the land is held by the public authority for statutory purposes.
Dec 05, 2019

Supreme Court to hand down key ruling next week on village greens and land held by public bodies pursuant to statutory powers

The Supreme Court will next week (11 December) hand down a key judgment on village green registration where publically accessible land is held by public authorities pursuant to statutory powers.
Dec 03, 2019

Kings Chambers barrister secures three CPO confirmations for council at public inquiry

Piers Riley-Smith of Kings Chambers has recently secured confirmation of three compulsory purchase orders (CPOs) for City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council, all at public inquiry.
Nov 29, 2019

Council submits £130m claims in High Court bid to recover costs under housing estate maintenance PFI

Camden Council has submitted claims to the High Court to recover costs from the contractor PFIC (Partners for Improvement in Camden) and its principal subcontractors, who previously had responsibility for refurbishment and maintenance of the Chalcots Estate, under a private finance initiative agreement.
Nov 27, 2019

University loses Court of Appeal battle over Electronic Communications Code and access rights for operators

The University of London has lost an appeal over whether the Upper Tribunal has power under the Electronic Communications Code to impose on the occupier of a building an agreement permitting access by an operator to determine whether that building is suitable for the installation of electronic communications apparatus.
Nov 26, 2019

DAC Beachcroft advises North West council on £47m shopping centre acquisition

DAC Beachcroft has advised Blackpool Council on its £47m purchase of the town’s Houndshill Shopping Centre from the receivers of its previous owners, BCC Eiffel.
Nov 22, 2019

Council able to correct Adopted Policies Map to show land inside Green Belt instead of outside of it: High Court

Vale of White Horse District Council had the right to correct an error on a map of Green Belt boundaries without going through a complete consultation on the matter, the High Court has ruled.
Nov 18, 2019

London council to take battle over borough-wide injunction and camping on open spaces to Court of Appeal next month

The Court of Appeal will next month (3 December) hear an appeal by Bromley Council over the High Court’s refusal to extend an interim injunction prohibiting camping on 171 open spaces and car parks in the borough.
Nov 07, 2019

London borough fails in Upper Tribunal appeal over services charges and heating system renovation

The London Borough of Southwark has lost a case in the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) over whether it can impose service charges on leaseholders on an estate where the heating system pipework has been renovated.
Oct 29, 2019

Chancery Division of High Court hears battle between council and tenant over water agreements and ‘re-selling’

The High Court is this week hearing a test case that will consider whether local authorities and housing associations have acted lawfully in failing to pass on to their tenants any discount or commission agreed with water companies.
Oct 23, 2019

Council secures £420k fines for developer and contractor over felling of rare Giant Redwood and other protected trees

A developer, his company and a tree contractor have been fined a combined £420,000 after breaching tree preservation regulations attached to trees near a site that the company was developing.
Oct 22, 2019

Local authority wins High Court dispute with developers over operation of overage mechanism

A local authority has won a High Court battle with a consortium of developers over the interpretation of an overage provision in a s.106 agreement, it has been reported.
Oct 18, 2019

Ombudsman criticises two London boroughs over way they sought to recover historic business rate debts

The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman has criticised two London councils for the way they tried to recover historic business rate debts.
Oct 17, 2019

County council defeats Court of Appeal challenge over designation of rights of way

The Court of Appeal has rejected a case brought by a landowner against Cumbria County Council over the designation of public rights of way.
Oct 11, 2019

Local authority defeats bid for relief against forfeiture of lease for non-payment of service charges

A High Court master has dismissed a claim against the London Borough of Lambeth for relief against forfeiture for non-payment of service charges reserved as rent.


December 06, 2019

Climate emergency #3: have you thought about New Housing?

In the latest of a series of articles on how local authorities can respond to a climate emergency, Maxim Laithwaite and David Hutton consider the opportunities provided by new housing?
November 22, 2019

‘Code Red’ - Guidance for landowners on the (New) Electronic Communications Code

Were the initial anxieties of public and private sector landowners about the Electronic Communications Code justified? James Nelson, Lillee Reid-Hunt and Nicholas Grundy QC examine its impact.
November 22, 2019

Implications of the Giordano decision for CIL

A recent Court of Appeal decision in relation to the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) has significant implications - and some odd consequences, writes Christopher Cant.
November 22, 2019

Applying heritage policies: levels of harm

A High Court judge has recently issued an important ruling concerning the application of heritage policies. Killian Garvey and Philip Robson examine the outcome.
November 14, 2019

Social housing restrictions – is Homes England consent required or not?

Tanya Edmonds looks at the uncertainty around Land Registry restrictions when social housing providers dispose of land.
November 08, 2019

Unoccupied properties and immunity from enforcement action

A London borough recently succeeded in an important High Court challenge to the Secretary of State’s approach to immunity from enforcement action. Charles Streeten explains why.
November 08, 2019

Recovering costs after the lifting of automatic suspensions

Melanie Pears and Tim Care examine a case where a claimant bidder argued that the defendant contracting authority should not have all the costs of its successful application to lift an automatic suspension.
November 01, 2019

The public/private joint venture – why do they succeed?

Anthony Vittadini highlights some of the keys to success when implementing public/private joint ventures and those involving property in particular.
October 29, 2019

Retrofitting social housing

Retrofit social housing is crucial to meet zero net emission targets. Nathan Bradberry explains what this opportunity involves for local authorities and registered providers.
October 25, 2019

Leases, outdoor advertising and concessions

The Court of Appeal recently rejected a legal challenge to a London borough’s award of leases for land on which structures that support large digital advertising screens are situated. Mari Roberts explains why.
October 18, 2019

Property guardians and rating

The Upper Tribunal has clarified the identification of the unit of assessment for buildings occupied by property guardians, writes Luke Wilcox.
October 04, 2019

Biodiversity Net Gain – what are the key features?

The government is to introduce a requirement for development to deliver 'biodiversity net gain'. Liz Dunn provides an overview for local authorities, landowners and developers.
September 20, 2019

Gypsy and Traveller site allocation policy defended

A city council recently successfully defended a judicial review challenge over its Gypsy and Traveller site allocations policy. Adrian Davis analyses the judgment.
September 13, 2019

Heritage assets, demolition and future benefits

The High Court has interpreted paragraph 196 of the National Planning Policy Framework on the protection of heritage assets. Matthew Fraser explains the outcome.
August 30, 2019

Section 73 permissions and the new CIL Regulations

Christopher Cant assesses the application of the Community Infrastructure Levy regime to planning permissions granted under section 73 in relation to post-CIL parent permissions.
August 30, 2019

Services charges and additional provisions

The Upper Tribunal has considered whether a tenancy agreement allowed a social landlord to charge for additional services. John Murray reports on the outcome.
August 13, 2019

Making the most of commercial assets

How can housing associations make the most of their commercial assets? Jo Judge explains.
August 13, 2019

Responding to the 'Building a safer future' consultation

Andrew Millross sets out the key points from Anthony Collins Solicitors' response to the 'Building a safer future' consultation.
July 19, 2019

Transfer agreements and overage payments

A local authority recently succeeded in a summary judgment application in relation to overage payments due under a transfer agreement. Lina Mattsson explains how.
July 05, 2019

Redevelopments and rating

The Upper Tribunal has clarified the law on rating of buildings undergoing redevelopment. Dan Kolinsky QC and Luke Wilcox analyse the ruling.