European Planning Law

This is a long-term research project concerning Union competence in relation to planning law. Please see the dedicated page for more details of this project, its goals, and the approach being taken to examining Union influence on the planning law systems in place in Member States.

Planning Law in the United Kingdom


“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

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

This paper was delivered to the AESOP conference. It is now being published in the International Journal of Law in the Built Environment. Please see above for more detail.

Planning Law and Nuisance

Case 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.