Cornerstone Development Quarterly: April 2021

16 Apr 2021

Planning and Environment

April 2020

Cornerstone Development Quarterly

A note from the editors

The latest edition of the Quarterly arrives as Chambers emerges, tentatively, from the teeth of lockdown. We are enjoying, once again, being able to debate thorny issues (planning or otherwise) face-to-face; welcoming clients (in a Covid-secure manner) into our conference suite for cons, hearings and inquiries; and, perhaps most of all, the prospect of sharing an (albeit chilly) end-of-week drink. We look forward to seeing some of you in Chambers in the not too distant future.  
As always, the articles in this edition touch upon live and controversial issues in planning. We hope they will prompt discussion and debate within your teams.

Rob Williams, Emma Dring, Dr Ashley Bowes

Extensions in the Green Belt and material changes of use – what’s the proper approach?

Author: Ruchi Parekh

Ruchi Parekh examines the competing arguments concerning Green Belt policy on extensions which bring about material changes of use. The Bluebell Cemetery appeal raised an important question about the proper interpretation of national policy on this issue  – and its outcome, while far from straightforward, is likely to lead to an inconsistent treatment of development proposals in the Green Belt



A bumpy landing for “drop-in” permissions?

Author: Robin Green

Robin Green considers the implications of Hillside Parks Ltd v Snowdonia National Park Authority [2020] EWCA Civ 1440,  which brings into question the proper scope of the well-known principles in Pilkington and Sage, as well as the efficacy of so-called drop-in permissions.



Must decision makers have regard to climate change when considering development proposals?

Author: Rowan Clapp

Rowan Clapp reviews the current state of play, looking at the NPPF, case law and the recent report of the Public Accounts Committee on ‘Achieving Net Zero’.


All things great and beautiful

Author: Harriet Townsend

Harriet Townsend reviews the proposed changes to the NPPF, with a particular focus on the proposal to include “beauty” as a policy objective



We will be continuing to host FREE webinars throughout the year:

Please follow the links below to book your place:

19th April 2021 -11am – Getting to Grips with Infrastructure Projects as a Local Authority
Speakers: Michael Bedford QC, Estelle Dehon and Ruchi Parekh

4th May 2021 -11am – Planning for schools: academy and free school planning appeals
Speakers: Lisa Busch QC, Harriet Townsend, Ryan Kohli and Rowan Clapp

24th May 2021 -11am –Developing Greenfield Sites Outside Settlement Boundaries
Speakers: Jonathan Clay, Dr. Ashley Bowes and Rowan Clapp

7th June 2021 – 11am – Compulsory Purchase: A fresh perspective
Speakers: Paul Shadarevian QC, Harriet Townsend, Emmaline Lambert and Dr. Christina Lienen

21st June 2021 – 11am – Planning Case Law Update
Speakers: James Findlay QC, Ryan Kohli, Ruchi Parekh and John Fitzsimons

Please email if you would like any more information.

Click here to access recordings and resources from our previous webinars.



Planning permission granted for new Free School, despite conflict with the development plan

Land at former all-weather pitch and Astro Turf tennis courts, Rosehill Recreation Ground, Rose Hill, Sutton SM1 3HH APP/P5870/W/19/3241269  Lisa Busch QC acted successfully for the Secretary of State for education in….

Redevelopment of redundant poultry plant for residential rejected as unsustainable in a rural location

Haughley Park is a Grade I listed mansion in a parkland setting in the countryside to the west of Stowmarket but with “very unusual” addition of a large redundant poultry….

Application by Queensgate Bow UK Holdco Limited Kensington Forum Hotel, 97 Cromwell Road, London SW7 4DN

Between 2019 and 2021 Lisa acted in an advisory capacity for a number of local residents’ associations who were Rule 6 parties in the protracted proceedings involving an application by….


After JR Threat, Secretary of State Calls in Cumbrian Coal Mine

The Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government has decided to call in for his own determination an application by West Cumbria Mining (WCM) for a new mine….

Bramshill: the NPPF, isolated homes in the countryside, and the assessment of harms and benefits to heritage assets

Introduction 1. The Court of Appeal’s judgment in Bramshill v SSHCLG [2021] EWCA Civ 320 addresses the interpretation and application of policies in the National Planning Policy Framework (“NPPF”) against the….

Inadequate Environmental Impact Assessment in Intensive Chicken Farming

The High Court has quashed a planning permission for an intensive chicken farming facility in Shadingfield, East Suffolk. In Keating v East Suffolk Council [CO/4377/2020] the Claimant applied for permission to….

Supreme Court hears R (on the application of Fylde Coast Farms Ltd) v Fylde Borough Council

On 9 March 2021, the Supreme Court will hear R (on the application of Fylde Coast Farms Ltd) v Fylde Borough Council. The Court will consider the correct interpretation of….


12 members ranked by Planning Resource as ‘top barristers’

Newly Released: Cornerstone on the Planning Court (Second Edition)

Cornerstone Barristers welcomes new clerk Billy Brett

Cornerstone Barristers welcomes two new pupils


If you have any queries, or wish to instruct members of the Cornerstone Planning and Environment Team, please contact:

Elliot Langdorf, Senior Clerk,
Sam Collins, Team Leader,
Dan Gatt, Team Leader,

020 7242 4986


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