Planning and Environment

Cornerstone Barristers has some of the most highly regarded barristers in the planning and environment sector. Our barristers combine specialist expertise with exceptional market knowledge to deliver strategic legal solutions. From our offices in London, Birmingham and Cardiff we advise a wide range of clients from large property developers and public bodies through to small businesses and individuals.

Our barristers are regularly involved in planning enforcement appeals and inquiries, development plan inquiries and in planning challenges before the law courts at all levels.

Our knowledge spans the full spectrum of planning and environment issues, including related areas such as public law, property, energy, and local government law. We are specialists in compulsory purchase and compensation cases.

Particular expertise includes:

  • Local plans
  • Green Belt and countryside
  • Housing
  • Compulsory purchase and compensation
  • The historic environment
  • Retail and commercial development
  • Highways and transport infrastructure
  • Energy and renewables
  • Fracking
  • Minerals and waste
  • Habitats and species protection
  • Environmental impact assessments / Strategic environmental assessments
  • Commons, town and village greens
  • Rights of way

Our barristers have experience acting across multiple business sectors, including development, infrastructure, energy and leisure, often acting on major inquiries and nationally significant matters.

Recently this has included:

  • The rejection of four onshore wind farms following Wales’s longest ever planning inquiry;
  • Challenges to highly controversial proposals concerning fracking sites in Lancashire;
  • Conjoined challenges over significant basement developments in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea; and
  • The HS2 railway Hybrid Bill.

The team is the leading authority on planning issues and recently published the Second Edition of Cornerstone on the Planning Court. The book provides a detailed review and analysis of the work of the Planning Court, as well as a practical and tactical guide to planning judicial review and related statutory challenges.

Cornerstone holds an annual Planning Day conference (around November) which is highly popular among planning specialists, solicitors and policymakers. The conference features a series of talks from the majority of the team alongside lunch and post-conference drinks. See highlights from Planning Day 2023 below and purchase the catch-up package here.

Contact the Clerks

    A superior set with strength and depth, providing an excellent service.

    Legal 500 (2024)

    Cornerstone is one of the leading public law and planning sets in the country.

    Legal 500 (2024)

    A growing force in planning. The turnover is increasing, and barristers are doing very high-profile planning challenges in the courts.

    Legal 500 (2024)

    Strong barristers at every level of experience.

    Legal 500 (2024)

    One of the top planning sets in London and has a strong environmental law team.

    Legal 500 (2022)

    A very strong set in my area of work – planning and environment.

    Legal 500 (2023)

    Cornerstone have a good group of barristers with excellent skills and expertise in the planning law field. I would not hesitate to instruct any of their specialists in this field.

    Legal 500 (2023)

    Cornerstone Barristers have always been my go-to, having worked with a variety of barristers within the chambers, each assisting with different aspects of planning and being able to support whichever case they are required.

    Legal 500 (2023)

    Cornerstone has a fantastic range of barristers, from silks to junior juniors, who are regularly instructed in some of the biggest and notable planning cases.

    Legal 500 (2023)


See all


See all