Aberdeen City and Shire Strategic Development Planning Authority v Elsick Development Company Limited: SC 25 Oct 2017

The court was asked whether, anticipating substantial growth, a local authority had power to attach to permissions for development conditions intended to recover sums for pooled fund for infrastructure development.
Held: The appeal failed. Approved strategic development plans and their supplementary guidance are of substantial importance to planning decisions. A planning obligation may be entered into in circumstances which are not connected with any planning application. When considering a planning application, the authority must allow for material provisions of the development plan and other material considerations. For a planning obligation to be material it must have some connection with the proposed development which more than trivial. If a planning obligation, which is otherwise irrelevant to the application, is sought as a policy in the development plan, the policy seeking to impose such an obligation is an irrelevant consideration for determination of the planning application.


Lord Neuberger, Lady Hale, Lord Mance, Lord Reed, Lord Hodge


[2017] UKSC 66, UKSC 2016/0157, [2018] JPL 433, [2017] PTSR 1413, 2017 GWD 34-537, 2017 SLT 1231, [2018] 1 P and CR 14, 2018 SCLR 56


Bailii, Bailii Summary, SC, SC Summary, SC Summary Video, SC 2017 06 13 am Video, SC 2017 06 13 pm Video


Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997 75, Planning etc (Scotland) Act 2006




Appeal fromElsick Development Co Ltd v Aberdeen City and Shire Stratetgic Development Planning Authority and Another SCS 29-Apr-2016
(First Division, Inner House) ED appealed from the adoption of a supplementary guidance (SG).
Held: The appeal succeeded. The First Division upheld three of the four grounds of appeal advanced. First, the court upheld the submission that the . .
CitedAssociated Provincial Picture Houses Ltd v Wednesbury Corporation CA 10-Nov-1947
Administrative Discretion to be Used Reasonably
The applicant challenged the manner of decision making as to the conditions which had been attached to its licence to open the cinema on Sundays. It had not been allowed to admit children under 15 years of age. The statute provided no appeal . .
CitedPyx Granite Co Ltd v Minister of Housing and Local Government CA 1958
Pyx Granite had the right to quarry in two areas of the Malvern Hills. The company required permission to break fresh surface on one of the sites.
Held: Conditions attached to the planning permission relating to such matters as the times when . .
CitedFawcett Properties Ltd v Buckingham County Council HL 1960
A grant of planning permission was subject to an agricultural occupancy condition: ‘The occupation of the houses shall be limited to persons whose employment or latest employment is or was employment in agriculture as defined by section 119(1) of . .
CitedMixnams Properties Ltd v Chertsey Urban District Council HL 1965
The local authority was not entitled under the 1960 Act to lay down conditions relating to the licensee’s powers of letting or licensing caravan spaces to its customers. The freedom to contract is a fundamental right, and that if Parliament intends . .
CitedCity of Edinburgh Council v Secretary of State for Scotland and Another; Same v Same (Conjoined Appeals) HL 31-Oct-1997
The Listed buildings registers are to be read consistently; the trading level is a material consideration in listed buildings consent applications. The weight to be given to a material consideration once identified was a matter of judgment for the . .
CitedNewbury District Council v Secretary of State for the Environment HL 1981
The grant of a temporary planning permission did not operate to cancel an existing established use. A planning condition requiring removal of hangars was invalid because it did not fairly or reasonably relate to the permitted development. The grant . .
CitedGrampian Regional Council v Secretary of State for Scotland HL 1983
The House endorsed the practice of imposing negative conditions in planning consents, upholding the validity of a condition that the development of the site could not commence until the road on the western boundary of the site had been closed by a . .
CitedGood and Another v Epping Forest District Council CA 11-Nov-1993
The Court was asked whether a planning authority could validly achieve by agreement any purpose which it could not validly achieve by planning condition or whether the test for validity was the same in each case.
Held: A council may agree to a . .
CitedTesco Stores Ltd v Secretary of State for the Environment and Others CA 25-May-1994
Three companies competed for permission to build a retail food superstore in Witney. The inspector recommended Tesco’s proposal, but the SSE set aside the inspector’s decision in favour of the local authority’s preference. Tesco sought a declaration . .
CitedTesco Stores Ltd v Secretary of State for the Environment and Others HL 11-May-1995
Three companies had applied for permission to build retail food superstores in Witney. The Inspector had recommended Tesco’s proposal, but the respondent rejected it. Tesco’s had offered to provide by way of a section 106 agreement full funding for . .
CitedMcIntosh v Aberdeenshire Council 1999
Lord MacLean upheld the validity of a planning obligation to build an estate road to serve the owner’s development of his land and also to facilitate the development of neighbouring land in third party ownership . .

Cited by:

CitedWright, Regina (on The Application of Wright) v Resilient Energy Severndale Ltd and Another SC 20-Nov-2019
W challenged the grant of planning permission for the change of use of agricultural land to allow erection of a wind turbine, saying that the authority had taken into account a promise by the land owner to run the scheme as a community development . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.


Updated: 09 May 2022; Ref: scu.597667