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Planning - 1970- 1979

Town and Country Planning.

These cases are extracted from a very large database. The entries on that database are now being published individually to the main swarb.co.uk website in a much improved form. As cases are published here, the entry here will be replaced by a link to the same case in that improved form on swarb.co.uk. In addition the swarb.co.uk site includes very substantial numbers of cases after 2000. Please take the time to look.  

This page lists 29 cases, and was prepared on 21 October 2013. These case are being transferred one by one to the main swarb.co.uk site which presents them better, with links to full text where we have it, and much improved cross referencing.
Lavender -v- Minister of Housing and Local Government; 1970
Manchester Corporation -v- Connolly [1970] Ch 420
1970
CA
Lord Diplock
Planning, Land, Litigation Practice Casemap
1 Citers
The local authority sought to use an injunction to assist in enforcing planning controls. The court had no power to make an interlocutory order for possession. Lord Diplock: "The writ of possession was originally a common law writ (although it is now regulated, as I say, by Ord. 45 r.3) under which it was ordered that the plaintiff recover possession of the land. Like other common law remedies it did not act in personam against the defendant. It authorised the executive power as represented by the sheriff to do certain things, perform certain acts, in this particular case to evict from land persons who are there and deliver possession of the land to the plaintiff. "
Stringer -v- Ministry of Housing and Local Government; 1970
Hartley -v- Minister of Housing and Local Government [1970] 1 QB 413
1970
CA
Lord Denning MR, Widgery LJ
Planning
1 Citers
A petrol station operated with an area to display and sell cars. Sales stopped in 1961 when the owner died. His son was thought too young and inexperienced son to be involved in car sales. Sales were resumed in 1965 when a new owner acquired the site. The court was asked whether that 1965 resumption amounted to an unauthorised change of use. The Minister and the Divisional Court held that it did. The appellant site owner submitted: "The intention is an essential element; and here the evidence supports the view that though the widow, because of her son's youth and inexperience, told him not to sell cars, she would have liked the car sales to continue since the demand was there; so the evidence is that the car sales use was only temporarily suspended until such time as the then owners felt able to resume it." Held: The submission failed.
Lord Denning MR: "The question in all such cases is simply this: Has the cessation of use (followed by a non-use) been merely temporary, or did it amount to an abandonment? If it was merely temporary, the previous use can be resumed without planning permission being obtained. If it amounted to abandonment, it cannot be resumed unless planning permission is obtained. ... Abandonment depends on the circumstances. If the land has remained unused for a considerable time, in such circumstances that a reasonable man might conclude that the previous use had been abandoned, then the tribunal may hold it to have been abandoned."
Widgery LJ: "The substance of the defence of the appellant in this case must be that although it seems there had been no car sales use from 1961 to 1965, yet on a fair and commonsense view of the facts, the proper interpretation of those facts was that the original phase 1 use for car sales had never come to an end. It is in connection with that argument that the question of abandonment arises.
It has been suggested in the courts before, and it seems to me that it is now time to reach a view upon it, that it is perfectly feasible in this context to describe a use as having been abandoned when one means that it has not merely been suspended for a short and determined period, but has ceased with no intention to resume it at any particular time. It is perfectly true, as Mr. Glidewell says, that the word 'abandonment' does not appear in the legislation. We are not concerned with the legislation at this stage but merely with the facts of the matter. I cannot think of a better word to describe a situation in which the land owner has stopped the activities constituting the use not merely for a temporary period, but with no view to their being resumed. If that has happened, then, as a matter of fact, the use has ceased."
Lever (Finance) Ltd -v- City of Westminster; CA 22-Jul-1970
Kent County Council -v- Kingsway Investments (Kent) Limited; HL 1971
Regina -v- Yeovil Borough Council, ex parte Trustees of Elim Pentecostal Church, Yeovil; QBD 1971
Hussain -v- Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions (1971) 221 EG 627
1971

Planning Casemap

Petticoat Lane Rentals Ltd -v- Secretary of State for the Environment; CA 1971
Westminster Bank Limited -v- The Minister for Housing and Local Government, Beverley Borough Council; HL 1971
Stevens -v- Bromley London Borough Council [1972] 1 Ch 400
1972

Salmon LJ, Stamp LJ, Edmund Davies LJ
Planning Casemap
1 Cites

The court referred to the extent of interest in land required by caravan dwellers to support payment of compensation on the issue of enforcement notice. Held: Salmon LJ: "I agree that the interest referred to in section 45(3)(b) is confined to a legal or equitable interest and does not include an interest in the loose or colloquial sense of someone being interested in the land." Stamp LJ, (dissenting), the caravan dwellers had no legal or equitable interest in the land itself or any part of it.
Town and Country Planning Act 1962 45(3)(b)
Burdle -v- Secretary of State for the Environment [1972] 1 WLR 1207; [1972] 23 All ER 240
22 Jun 1972
QBD
Lord Widgery CJ, Willis, Bridge JJ
Planning
1 Cites
1 Citers
The appellants had purchased land which had been used as a dwelling with a lean-to annex which had been used as a scrap yard, selling off car parts. The appellant had reconstructed the annex with a shop front, and began to use it more substantially for the sale of car parts. The planning authority served an enforcement notice asserting a change of use and breach of planning control. On appeal both the appellant and respondent presented the site as a whole. The appeal failed, but the respondent had argued that the notice could apply only to the annex, falling within the definition on its own of a shop, and that therefore the enforcement referred to the annex alone. The appellant said that by considering only the annex, he had lost the ability to argue that as regards the site as a whole, there had been no material cange of use. Held: The Secretary of State's decision did not identify the reasoning used to reach his decision, and the matter must be remitted. Whilst the word shop would not naturally apply to the whole site, the accident of the language used by the planning authority could not determine what made up the planning unit. A good guide to what made up a planning unit was to consider the site as a whole until and unless some smaller unit could be identified from its physical and functional identity.
Bridge J: It 'may equally be apt to consider the entire unit of occupation even though the occupier carries on a variety of activities and it is not possible to say hat one isincidental or ancillary to another' and 'however, it may frequently occur that within a single unit of occupation two or more physically separate and distinct areas are occupied for substantially different and unrelated purposes. In such a case each area used for a different main purpose (together with its incidental and ancillary activities) ought to be considered as a separate planning unit.'
Town and Country Planning Act 1962 180
Thomas David (Porthcawl) Ltd and others -v- Penybont Rural District Council and others [1972] 3 All ER 1092
5 Oct 1972

Lord Denning MR, Edmund Davies, Stephenson LJJ
Planning Casemap
1 Cites

The appellant complained that an enforcement notice had been served as to an entire plot of land when the activities complained of, sand and gravel extraction, had occurred on only two smaller parts. Held: The site should be looked at as a whole. The appellant had a licence from the land owner to extract materials from the remaining site, had claimed the right to make such extractions, and had already extended their operations during the appeal process. The abolition of the four year rule for change of use enforcement did not apply to mining.
Kingston London Borough Council -v- Environment Secretary [1973] 1 WLR 1549
1973

Lord Widgery C.J
Administrative, Planning Casemap
1 Cites
1 Citers
Planning was granted for the rebuilding of a railway station on condition that the land allocated for parking should be made available for such purposes at all times and used for no other purpose. The station was duly rebuilt but the car park was not provided. The local planning authority served an enforcement notice requiring compliance with the condition. Held: The words of the statute clearly on their face entitle the local planning authority to impose conditions which affect land not the subject of the application itself and which go to the restriction of the past user or removal of existing work. Although they are wide it has been recognised for a long time that they are subject to certain restrictions. The two principal restrictions which the court had placed on those words are first that a condition is invalid as being contrary to law unless it is reasonably related to the development in the planning permission which has been granted: it must not be used for an ulterior purpose, and second a condition which is so clearly unreasonable that no reasonable planning authority could have imposed it may be regarded as ultra vires and contrary to law and treated as such in proceedings in this court
Aston -v- Secretary of State for the Environment Unreported, 09 April 1973
9 Apr 1973

Lord Widgery CJ
Planning

The court considered the planning effect of a new building on about a half of a site. Lord Widgery CJ: ". . The principle which one derives from the authorities and applies to the present case is that, where you have a new building erected, that part of the land which was absorbed in the new building and covered by the new building is merged in it; you start with a new planning unit which has no permitted planning use except those derived from the planning permission, if any, and from section 33(2) of the Town and Country Planning Act 1971, which allows such a building in many instances to be used for the purpose for which it was designed."
Town and Country Planning Act 1971 33(2)
Regina -v- Hillingdon London Borough Council, Ex parte Royco Homes Ltd; 1974
Turner -v- Secretary of State of the Environment; 1974
AI and P (Stratford) Ltd -v- Tower Hamlets London Borough Council [1975] 237 Estates Gazette 416
1975

Planning
The landowner challenged conditions attached to a grant of planning permission for an extension. A restriction would require the existing office accomodation to be used for ancillary purposes only. Held: The conditions were upheld.
Howard -v- Secretary of State; CA 1975
Hope -v- Secretary of State for the Environment (1975) 31 P & CR 120
1975

Phillips J
Planning Casemap
1 Cites

Regina -v- Secretary of State for the Environment ex parte Ostler; CA 1977
Sovmots Investments Ltd -v- Secretary of State for the Environment [1977] QB 411
1977

Forbes J
Planning
1 Citers
Conveyancing Act 1881 6
Clyde & Co -v- Secretary of State for the Environment; CA 1977
Newbury District Council -v- Secretary of State for the Environment and others (1977) 35 P&CR 170
1977
QBD
Mr Justice Robert Goff
Planning Casemap

Mr Justice Robert Goff: “The subsection provides that no enforcement notice shall be served in respect of such a development. It does not provide, as it easily could have done if such had been the intention, that no enforcement notice should be served on the Crown in respect of such development. It follows that, if a private citizen should subsequently acquire any such land from the Crown, he would not have to apply for planning permission in respect of development within the subsection. He too would be protected from the service of an enforcement notice by the terms of the subsection which are quite explicit.”
Town and Country Planning Act 1947 87(1)
Penwith District Council -v- Secretary of State for the Environment [1977] JPL 371; [1977] 34 P & CR 269
1977
QBD
Planning
The second respondents had a factory. They sought planning permission to extend it, and this was granted with conditions, against which the land-owners appealed, saying that the first defendant had misused the opportunity to seek to impose conditions on the existing development. Held: When an application was made, an authority might grant permission attaching conditins which would affect an existing authorised us and without offering compensation. The new conditions must however relate to the devel;opment now permitted. That applied in this case, and the conditions were not ultra vires.
Seddon Properties Ltd -v- Secretary of State for the Environment (1978) 42 P & CR 26; [1981] 42 P&CR 26
1978

Forbes J
Planning Casemap
1 Citers
The court considered the degree of detail to be provided in a decision notice: "Since the courts will only interfere if he acts beyond his powers (which is the foundation of all the above principles), it is clear that his powers include the determination of the weight to be given to any particular contention; he is entitled to attach what weight he pleases to the various arguments and contentions of the parties; the courts will not entertain a submission that he gave undue weight to one argument or failed to give any weight at all to another. Again, in doing so he must, at any rate if substantial issues are involved, give clear reasons for his decision.
In considering whether or not the Secretary of State has acted contrary to any of these principles the materials on which the court may come to a conclusion are, in general, the inspector's report and the letter of the Secretary of State setting out his decision. In approaching this task it is no part of the court's duty to subject that decision letter to the kind of scrutiny appropriate to the determination of the meaning of a contract or a statute. Because the letter is addressed to the parties who are well aware of all the issues involved and of the arguments deployed at the inquiry it is not necessary to rehearse every argument . ."
Brighton Borough Council -v- Secretary of State for Environment (1978) 39 P & CR 46
1978

Planning

Winchester City Council -v- Secretary of State for the Environment; 1978
Suffolk County Council -v- Mason; HL 1979

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