Misleading to suggest earlier planning appeal had not made fully reasoned application of sequential test

In Milton (Peterborough) Estates Company (t/a Fitzwilliam (Malton) Estate, R (on the application of) v Ryedale District Council & Anor [2015] the claimant had been refused planning permission for their Livestock Market Site (“LMS”) but had won on appeal. At the appeal the inspector had considered a rival retail scheme and concluded that the LMS scheme decisively more fully met the Government’s “sequential test” for edge of town centre development.

The council now granted planning consent for that rival retail scheme. In their report to the committee the planning officers sought to justify departure from the sequential test reasoning applied by the inspector in the claimant’s appeal by saying it had not been fully reasoned.

This was the main ground on which Leeds High Court quashed the rival retail scheme’s planning consent. On the contrary they found that the inspector had impeccably reasoned the application of the sequential test in the claimant’s earlier appeal. So the officers’ pointing to a lack of reasoning in their report had significantly misled the planning committee in their decision to award that planning consent.

One of the other grounds was that the planning officers’ report failed to give adequate reasons to justify departing from the inspector’s sequential test findings in the earlier LMS scheme appeal.

This blog has been posted out of general interest. It does not replace the need to get bespoke legal advice in individual cases.