Posts By: dcplatest

The unvarnished truth






Tricky things, nail bars. In a previous blog, On the nail, we reported an appeal case in which an inspector declined to issue a certificate of lawfulness for the use of a vacant shop as a nail bar on the grounds that they fall within different use classes. In Nailed it, meanwhile, the inspector, whilst recognising that nail bars are a sui generis use, allowed the change of use of a shop to a nail bar on the grounds that they are comparable uses equally appropriate to a shopping area.

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The future’s Orange






Actually, it’s not, now that Orange UK is firmly in the past and the advert featuring the company’s long-running strapline has been taken off the telly. Nevertheless, the company has left a legacy in Orange Personal Communications Services Ltd. & Ors, R (on the application of) v London Borough of Islington [2006]. This court judgment featured in a recent appeal against the refusal of outline planning permission for the redevelopment of a former Co-op store in the east Midlands with nine dwellings (DCS Number 400-025-646).

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The new normal?






We have seen a good number of appeal cases relating to lawful development certificates where inspectors have issued decisions without the benefit of a site visit. This might be unsurprising, given that such appeals turn on the facts of the case rather than matters of planning judgement. In a new development, we now have an example of a section 78 appeal which the inspector has decided without a site visit (DCS Number 400-025-725).

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Out on the streets






In Unprecedented times we flagged up an enforcement appeal decision in which the inspector accepted that an uncertain situation currently exists with regard to Covid-19 but nevertheless reasoned that under s173A of the Act the council had the power to extend the time for compliance with the notice. In a further enforcement appeal relating to an unauthorised house in multiple occupation in north London (DCS Number 400-025-551), however, the inspector extended the compliance period, recognising that the effect of the notice would be to deprive the tenants of their homes at a time when they would be unlikely to find somewhere else to live.

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Viel Gluck






A recent court case, Gluck v Secretary of State for Housing Communities and Local Government [2020], has brought good luck to a local authority in Cheshire which found itself unable to determine a prior approval application under Class Q of the GPDO within the requisite period.

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Taken out of context






The planning application process demands that information is provided about the context in which a development site is located. Given that that context might comprise land which is outside the control of the applicant, it can be problematic to provide information that is totally accurate. Nevertheless, providing inaccurate information has resulted in an unfortunate outcome for a would-be developer in north London.

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Unprecedented times






As we all now know, we live in unprecedented times, and we are all having to adapt in one way or another. For its part, the Planning Inspectorate is busily exploring new ways of working and decision-making whilst adhering to the principles of fairness, openness and impartiality. In this context, we thought it might be useful to flag up a recent appeal against an enforcement notice which required the demolition, within twelve months, of an unauthorised house in Kent (DCS Number 400-025-508).

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A wicked problem






An inspector has allowed a takeaway near to three primary schools on Merseyside, reasoning that primary school children would not be allowed out of school on their own, and so would be unable to buy takeaway food (DCS Number 400-025-467). You might think that perhaps the inspector has a point…until reading a further appeal decision, relating to a takeaway in Gateshead, in which the inspector reasons that where there are overweight children in an area there are probably also overweight adults, and planning policies are aimed at improving the health of the population as a whole (DCS Number 400-025-220).

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A textbook example






Every now and then an inspector writes a decision which is quite simply a textbook example of how to approach a particular situation. Here is a good one relating to a log cabin within the curtilage of a dwelling (DCS Number 400-024-865) which you might wish to file and use for reference, should you come across a similar proposal during your own work.

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