“Parish [council] wins permission for judicial review over decision under delegated authority”

“A parish council has been granted permission to apply for judicial review in their challenge to a grant of planning permission by a district council under purported exercise of delegated authority, barristers’ chambers Francis Taylor Building (FTB) has reported.

FTB, whose Meyric Lewis is acting for Newton Longville Parish Council, said members at Aylesbury Vale District Council had resolved to grant planning permission for residential development “delegated to officers… subject to such conditions as are considered appropriate and to include a condition requiring that a reserved matters application be made within 18 months of the date of permission and that any permission arising from that application be implemented within 18 months”.

The set said that in exercising their delegated authority, officers took the view that there was insufficient justification for shortening the period for applying for reserved matters and for requiring implementation within 18 months. “But that matter was neither raised with members nor addressed in the delegated report published by the Council.”
FTB added that in committee, members had wished to impose these short timeframes “because they were concerned about the length of time that the site had remained undeveloped notwithstanding the existence of planning permission granted in 2007 and then renewed in 2011 and so they wished to encourage the building out of the site more swiftly than if longer timeframes were allowed”.

The set said permission to apply for judicial review had been granted by the High Court on the ground that the decision went beyond the terms of the delegated authority because it conflicted with the confined terms of the members’ resolution.

Permission was also granted on a ground concerning the related section 106 agreement and in respect of officers’ failure to provide adequate reasons, as required by under reg. 7 of the Openness of Local Government Bodies Regulations 2014, in that they did not address the matters relied on as justifying a departure from the terms of the members’ resolution in the delegated report.

The parish council has made representations based on the terms of the judge’s grant of permission to see if a full hearing can be avoided, FTB said.

Meyric Lewis is instructed by Bob McGeady of Ashtons KCJ.”