IHBC’s ‘Practice insights’: Costs award against Lambeth Council highlights importance of site visits!

The IHBC’s Policy Chair Roy Lewis had drawn attention to the award of costs against Lambeth Council in a recent appeal, which emphasises the importance of doing site visits!

Following an application for costs in the case of  a successful appeal against Lambeth Council for refusal by London Russian Ballet School, the Planning Inspectorate awarded costs against the Council as it concluded that: ‘In failing to produce evidence and making inaccurate assertions about the proposal’s impact, unsupported by site inspection or objective analysis, the Council could not substantiate these reasons for refusal’.

IHBC Policy Chair Roy Lewis said: ‘The costs appeal decision highlights the essential need for site visits, and also that expert witnesses in public inquiries need to have a full grasp of the relevant legislation.’

‘This is especially important as anecdotal evidence suggests that some authorities are cutting back on site visits, which is a concern, while IHBC members should also have regard to this in respect of our Code of Conduct.’

The costs application was in relation to Appeals ref: APP/N5660/W/16/3151091 and APP/N5660/Y/16/3151092?London Russian Ballet School, 42 Clapham Manor Street, London SW4 6DZ

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