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Appeal of planning decision of the High Court would not be in the public interest

By: Ian Fitzharris BL

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High Court, in planning and development judicial review proceedings, delivers supplementary judgement (in proceedings which determined that planning board's decision to grant planning permission for strategic housing development was invalid) on board's application for leave to appeal the court's decision to the Court of Appeal, and refuses such leave on the grounds that: the proposed points of law of public importance fail to transcend the facts of the case; are abstract in points and seek to impermissibly reopen findings of fact; and are matters which take the application outside of the statutory limits within which leave could be granted.

Judicial review - supplementary judgment - application for leave to appeal - statutory application - legal test governing leave - statutory criteria - proposed points of law - special rules in relation to legal costs of certain types of environmental litigation - 'review procedure' - new appellate architecture under constitution - court of appeal - implications of breach of development plan - materiality of breach determined in principle judgment - no dispute between parties at that time as to applicable legal principles regarding breach - draft point does not arise from principal judgment - question in abstract - whether county development plan imports a mandatory requirement to carry out a justification test as per flood risk management guidelines - failure to transcend facts of case - concept of a 'justification test' - circumstances in which objective came to be in county plan - appeal in respect of finding would be wholly academic - no uncertainty as to relationship between statutory guidelines and a development plan - whether its permissible to reference best practice measures as an additional assurance, but is not the determinative factor, in reaching an AA screening determination - alleged error by court in application of legal principles - putative appellant not entitled to reopen findings of fact made by High Court - point of law of exceptional public importance - appeal undesirable in public interest - efficient use of scarce judicial resources - proceedings in effect would be moot - time, trouble and expense of defending appeal on principle judgment's Applicants - Applicants would not have any substantial interest in appeal - no undertaking given in relation to costs of appeal - application refused

Note: This is intended to be a fair and accurate report of a decision made public by a court of law. Any errors should be notified to the editor and will be dealt with accordingly.

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