Planning Law in the United Kingdom


“Morphological analysis of legal ideology: locating interpretive divergence” (2018) 10 Journal of Property, Planning and Environmental Law 5-16 (with E Shepherd)

In this article, Ed Shepherd and I explore ideology as a lens through which to examine planning law jurisprudence. We argue that the ideology of rule of law, and its influence on the ways in which the judiciary approach their task, is currently underestimated in doctrinal legal research and has a significant role to play.

“Incoherence and Incompatibility in Planning Law” (2015) 7 International Journal of Law in the Built Environment 111 with E Shepherd (winner of Highly Commended Award in the Emerald Literati Awards)

Recent developments in planning law in England have produced a legal framework which relies upon localism and a presumption in favour of sustainable development. This article argues that a lack of commitment to any one understanding of the terms used, to the competing ideologies behind them, and to the scale and space within which these policies are to be given force. Planning policy conceals this lack of coherence by relying on reasonableness and balance to achieve practical and sensible outcomes. When this is brought into a legal context however, and rendered justiciable, the masking of the incoherence is no longer effective, and legal problems result.

Conference Papers

“The ideology of the rule of law in land use disputes” AAG 2018 Annual Meeting, New Orleans, USA, April 2018 (with E Shepherd).

“Rule of law and ideology in planning—the role of the judiciary” George Mason/Cambridge Property and Regulation Symposium, Washington DC, USA, May 2017 (with E Shepherd, invited speaker).

“Legal barriers to sustainable development” LSE Debate on Sustainable Development, London, UK, March 2015 (invited speaker). 

“Local Decision-Making and National Goals: Incoherence and Incompatibility in Planning Law.” (with E Shepherd) AESOP, Utrecht July 2014

Planning Law and Nuisance

Articles and Notes

Lawrence v Fen Tigers: Where now for Nuisance?” [2014] Conveyancer and Property Lawyer 449

This case note discusses the recent decision of the Supreme Court in Lawrence v Fen Tigers. It argues that the case calls for clarification of the role of nuisance, and that the tort should focus on the interaction between competing property rights, rather than on public interest. In order to clarify this role, however, we do not simply need to resolve the relationship between planning, environmental regulation and nuisance, but we will also need to look at precisely the sort of issues that nuisance tackles.