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Commercial Property Updates

Housing Development Plans Boosted

Published on: 11 April 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Housing Development Plans Boosted

Proposals for up to 175 new homes on the edge of a Berkshire village have been boosted after the High Court ruled that the civil servant who blocked the plans made an error of law in failing to take into account a ministerial statement in which a fundamental shift in planning policy was announced to Parliament.

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Owner of Rubbish-Strewn Farm Receives Jail Warning

Published on: 09 April 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Owner of Rubbish-Strewn Farm Receives Jail Warning

The freehold owner of a farm which has for years been used as a dumping ground for derelict vehicles, machines and general rubbish in violation of planning control has been warned by a High Court that she could face imprisonment if she does not take action to clean it up.

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Firm Counts Cost of £3 Million Mortgage Blunder

Published on: 03 April 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Firm Counts Cost of £3 Million Mortgage Blunder

A professional firm must pay more than £300,000 in compensation after mistakenly releasing a bank’s funds in respect of a £3.3 million mortgage advance prior to completion and without authority. The firm admitted that it had been negligent and the Court of Appeal has now ruled that it also acted in breach of trust.

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Family Property Empire Collapses under £50 Million Debt

Published on: 21 March 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Family Property Empire Collapses under £50 Million Debt

Members of a prominent family who borrowed more than £50 million on the security of a high-end portfolio of London properties have failed to convince the High Court that they were unfairly treated by their bank.

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HS2 High-Speed Rail Scheme Consultation ‘Unfair’

Published on: 14 March 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

HS2 High-Speed Rail Scheme Consultation ‘Unfair’

The controversial HS2 high-speed rail scheme has suffered a setback after the High Court ruled that the consultation process in respect of compensation to be paid to property owners affected by the multi-billion-pound project ‘was so unfair as to be unlawful’.

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Heritage Site Wind Farm Planning Consent Quashed

Published on: 12 March 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Heritage Site Wind Farm Planning Consent Quashed

With the backing of English Heritage and the National Trust, a local authority has won a High Court challenge to plans for a wind farm that conservationists fear could result in substantial harm to a heritage area of national significance.

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Railway Station Development Go-Ahead

Published on: 04 March 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Railway Station Development Go-Ahead

A campaigner has failed in a High Court challenge to plans for the redevelopment of Twickenham Station and construction of 115 residential units, rising to a height of up to seven storeys.

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Light Industrial Enforcement Notice Upheld

Published on: 27 February 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Light Industrial Enforcement Notice Upheld

A landowner who demolished light industrial units, replacing them with larger ones, has failed in a High Court bid to overturn an enforcement notice requiring him to tear them down. The court dismissed as ‘unsustainable’ arguments that the enforcement notice was at odds with existing development rights and not sufficiently specific.

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Roofing Contractor Liable for £21 Million Factory Blaze

Published on: 24 February 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Roofing Contractor Liable for £21 Million Factory Blaze

A roofing contractor has been ordered to pay more than £21 million damages after the flick of an electrical switch caused a catastrophic fire that devastated a copper tubing factory. The High Court ruled that the contractor’s failure in its duty to carry out re-roofing work safely was the primary cause of the fire.

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Implied Power of Sewerage Discharge Swept Away

Published on: 14 February 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

In a decision of importance to landowners and water utility companies, the Court of Appeal has confirmed that the implied power enjoyed by sewerage undertakers for over 100 years to discharge waste water on to third party property without the owner’s consent has effectively been swept away.

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‘Land-Banking’ Scheme Breached Investment Rules

Published on: 10 February 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

‘Land-Banking’ Scheme Breached Investment Rules

A ‘land-banking’ scheme through which members of the public were invited to invest in plots of land in the hope of profiting from their development potential was a ‘collective investment scheme’ within the meaning of section 235 the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 and thus subject to regulation by the Financial Services Authority (FSA), the High Court has ruled.

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Planning Inspector Had ‘No Power’ to Grant Wind Farm Consent

Published on: 06 February 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Planning Inspector Had ‘No Power’ to Grant Wind Farm Consent

Planning permission for a wind farm on the Isle of Anglesey has been quashed by the High Court on grounds that a planning inspector had no jurisdiction to grant it. Pursuant to regulation 9(2) of the Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) (England and Wales) Regulations 1999Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) (England and Wales) Regulations 1999, the inspector was required to submit the plans to the Welsh Ministers for a screening opinion as to whether an environmental impact assessment (EIA) was required.

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Fall in Property Values Was An ‘Actionable Loss’ Court Rules

Published on: 04 February 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Fall in Property Values Was An ‘Actionable Loss’ Court Rules

In a ruling which is bound to cause consternation in the construction and associated industries, the Court of Appeal has ruled that falls in property values that coincide with project delays can give rise to an actionable loss.

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Garden Centre Can Sell Whatever It Likes

Published on: 03 February 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

A planning inspector was correct to issue a certificate of lawful use to the owner of a garden centre, enabling it to sell an unrestricted range of retail goods. The objection of the local planning authority (LPA) that such a use would breach a condition attached to the original grant of planning permission was rejected by the High Court.

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Charity Non-Domestic Rates Ruling

Published on: 23 January 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Charity Non-Domestic Rates Ruling

A local authority has suffered a setback in its attempt to make an international aid charity occupying two very large warehouses in its area pay more than £1.6 million in non-domestic rates.

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Court Guidance on Approach to Human Rights in Planning Cases

Published on: 11 April 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Court Guidance on Approach to Human Rights in Planning Cases

In opening the way for eviction of an extended family of gypsies – including several children - from a green belt site in Surrey, the High Court has given authoritative guidance on the correct balance to be struck between human rights and the proper enforcement of planning control.

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Consumer Insurance Act

Published on: 08 April 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Consumer Insurance Act

The new Consumer Insurance ActConsumer Insurance Act came into effect on 6 April 2013, bringing benefits for individuals who buy insurances of all types.

The nub of the change is that the requirement for the insured to make appropriate disclosures is replaced with a duty on the insured not to make a misrepresentation in an answer to a questions asked.

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Grass-Free Beach Declared a Protected ‘Village Green’

Published on: 27 March 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Grass-Free Beach Declared a Protected ‘Village Green’

The term ‘village green’ may conjure up to most people an image of a picturesque piece of open grass; however the Court of Appeal has ruled in an important test case that a beach can be regarded as a village green in the eyes of the law even though there is not a blade of grass in sight.

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Football Stadium Planning Permission Upheld

Published on: 20 March 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Football Stadium Planning Permission Upheld

Campaigners who fear that their peace and quiet will be shattered by a new 5,000-capacity football stadium in Moston, Manchester, have had their legal challenge to the plans dismissed. Arguments, inter alia, that Manchester City Council had been obliged to commission a full environment impact assessment of the plans prior to granting planning consent were rejected by the Court of Appeal.

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Developers Anxious over Re-Opening of Fuel Terminals

Published on: 14 March 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Developers Anxious over Re-Opening of Fuel Terminals

A potential clash between one of Britain's biggest regeneration projects and the re-opening of fuel terminals alongside the Manchester Ship Canal came under the High Court spotlight as landowners argued that they were being kept in the dark about issues which  could have a major impact on their development plans and public safety.

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Gypsy Festival Landowner Jailed for Contempt

Published on: 11 March 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Gypsy Festival Landowner Jailed for Contempt

A landowner who allowed travellers to use his farm to celebrate a religious festival in breach of a judge’s order has been sentenced to four months’ imprisonment for his contempt of court.

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Wind Farms ‘Very Much a Hot Potato’ Issue

Published on: 04 March 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Wind Farms ‘Very Much a Hot Potato’ Issue

In taking the very unusual step of granting a protective costs order to a concerned resident who is challenging the grant of planning permission for a wind farm, the High Court has acknowledged that such developments are ‘very much a hot potato’ in planning terms.

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Court Rules on ‘Fair Valuation’ of Company Shares

Published on: 26 February 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Court Rules on ‘Fair Valuation’ of Company Shares

In circumstances where the sole director of a property investment company had inflicted unfair prejudice on his fellow shareholder by procuring the transfer of its entire portfolio to himself at an under-value, the Court of Appeal has given guidance on the equitable method of valuing shares in the company.

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Right to Light Consultation Published

Published on: 17 February 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Right to Light Consultation Published

The Law Commission has published its consultation documentconsultation document designed to bring the law on rights to light up to date.

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Cafe Wins Legal Right to Use Pavement

Published on: 12 February 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Cafe Wins Legal Right to Use Pavement

When property is used for a purpose that is not in accordance with the planning permission, the relevant planning authority will generally take steps to stop the breach of planning regulations.

However, where a person is a 'long user' of the property in breach of the applicable planning regulations, the right to continue to use the property in that way may be made legal via an application for a 'certificate of lawful existing use or development' (CLEUD).

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Estate Agent Refused Prestige Development Introduction Fee

Published on: 06 February 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Estate Agent Refused Prestige Development Introduction Fee

An estate agent who claimed entitlement to a 25 per cent share of the profits made by the builders of a prestige hotel and apartment development – on the basis that he introduced them to the project – has had his case dismissed.

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Developer Fails to Prove Local Authority Deceit

Published on: 06 February 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Developer Fails to Prove Local Authority Deceit

A developer that failed to win a £70 million contract for the construction of a major sports and arts facility has failed to convince the High Court that it was the victim of deceit and fraudulent misrepresentation on the part of the local planning authority.

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Damage to Historic Building Façade Leads to £4.5 Million Claim

Published on: 03 February 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Damage to Historic Building Façade Leads to £4.5 Million Claim

The scene has been set for a £4.5 million court struggle after the historic facade of a landmark former Methodist chapel in Bradford was seriously damaged whilst it was being converted into luxury flats.

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Contract Dispute Adjudicator Did Not Breach Natural Justice

Published on: 30 January 2013 | in categories: Commercial Property Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Contract Dispute Adjudicator Did Not Breach Natural Justice

In the context of a contractual dispute in respect of a land decontamination project, arguments that an adjudicator unlawfully restricted his own jurisdiction by treating himself as bound by another adjudicator’s previous decision have been rejected.

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