Global law firm Clyde & Co acted for developer Corinthian Mountfield in the recent judgment by the Court of Appeal, pursuant to which it rejected a judicial review of the Secretary of State’s refusal to call-in Corinthian's planning application for a major residential-led development (including up to 4.000 new homes) to the south-east of Canterbury.
The appellants had argued that the Secretary of State had a duty to call-in the application under section 77 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990. This argument was rejected. The Court held that: (i) the Secretary of State’s discretion under section 77 is broad, and the wording of the Air Quality Regulations did not impose an obligation to call-in; and (ii) the Secretary of State’s decision could not be said to be irrational.
Whilst not determinative, the Court also dismissed the appellants' challenge to the previous conclusion of Dove J who had held that the Air Quality Directive did not require Member States to do more than adopt an air quality plan where there was a breach of Article 13 concerning limit values, such as refuse to grant planning permission for specific development proposals.
The Court also declined to refer the matter to the CJEU.
Ian Ginbey, partner at Clyde & Co comments: "We welcome this clear recognition by the Court as to the breadth of the Secretary of State's discretion under section 77 and that no duty to call-in arises under the Air Quality Regulations."
Clyde & Co's planning team is part of its Real Estate practice that comprises over 60 lawyers operating across England and Scotland in addition to real estate capabilities globally. The practice has a market-leading reputation for advising on high profile commercial and residential developments for developers, investors, occupiers, landlords and financiers.