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Recent success for our Planning Team

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Our planning team have been busy over the summer months working for a wide range of clients on a mixed caseload of planning appeals and agreements.  We are pleased to have achieved successful outcomes for our clients on two recent planning enforcement appeals, the results of which will have a significant impact on our clients' business activities and private lives. 

The first enforcement appeal related to the use of a dwelling as a small house in multiple occupation (HMO).  The property was in use as a HMO and had been for some time.  It was situated in an area subject to an Article 4 Direction which had withdrawn permitted development rights for a change of use from C3 to C4, meaning that express planning permission must be granted on applications for such development.  The Local Planning Authority had subsequently served a planning enforcement notice on our client for the unauthorised change of use of the property to a HMO.  Our client appealed this notice with our assistance on a number of grounds, including ground (a) that planning permission should be granted.  The appeal focused on the application and interpretation of the policy of the Local Planning Authority which essentially prevented an over concentration of HMO's in particular areas of the city from exceeding 20% within 100 meters of the street frontage.   Our specialist team of planning lawyers succeeded in arguing that the above policy had been misapplied by the Local Planning Authority and that the 20% threshold had not been exceeded in this case.  The Planning Inspector agreed and determined to grant planning permission for the continued use of the property as a HMO.  Our team were delighted to have secured this outcome for the client, who is now able to continue operating the property as a HMO as part of their business activities.

In another planning enforcement appeal, our planning team were contacted by a client who had received an enforcement notice from the Local Planning Authority relating to the construction of a replacement boundary wall at his property, which he believed would have been permitted under the permitted development regime.  The property was situated in a conservation area and the Local Planning Authority considered that the replacement wall would cause harm to the character and appearance of the area and the conservation area.  Our planning lawyers were instructed to appeal the enforcement notice and made the appeal on a number of grounds, including ground (a), that planning permission should be granted in this case.  The client also sought to establish a fallback position from the Local Planning Authority by obtaining a Certificate of Lawful Proposed Development for an alternative boundary fence of a similar height around his property, which the Local Planning Authority agreed would be acceptable.  Our team successfully argued that in policy terms the existing replacement wall would be more favourable than the fallback position, and that the replacement wall would not cause harm to the character and appearance of the area and the conservation area.  The Planning Inspector agreed and granted planning permission for the retention of the wall.  Another successful result which will save our client a significant sum and ensure continued privacy at their family home.


If you require advice regarding planning, please contact our Commercial Property team by contacting your local office, or complete our online enquiry form.