Monday, 19 September 2011


This blog is intended as a purely personal commentary on planning law issues, rather than a corporate or personal marketing tool, but I am very pleased to share with you the news that one of the country’s leading planning lawyers, David Brock, has today joined KEYSTONE LAW. He was until very recently head of Mills & Reeve’s planning law team and before that was a partner at Herbert Smith and he has also chaired the Law Society’s Planning & Environmental Law Committee for several years. Among many other professional activities, David has led the Law Society’s representations to the government on the Localism Bill, which has been successful in securing some important changes to Part 5 of the Bill, dealing with town planning. I know that David’s views on the enforcement provisions in the Bill coincide with those which I have expressed myself in this blog.

David’s arrival greatly strengthens the planning law team at KEYSTONE LAW, and we expect at least one other addition to the team and possibly two in the near future, which will bring our total strength in the planning law team to at least four and perhaps five, all of whom are experienced and long-serving planning lawyers.

David Brock has recently started his own blog, having been joint author of his previous firm’s planning law blog. I have provided a link to this blog on the side bar. You will find that David and I generally blog on different but equally interesting topics, and I think it is fair to say that David tends to concentrate on planning policy and what might be described as ‘corporate’ planning law (which reflects his experience in acting for major developers and landowners) whereas I generally concentrate more on the sort of planning law which is of concern to private clients and ‘SMEs’ [small and medium-size enterprises].

I was very interested to see a recent post in David’s blog in which he identifies the origin of “the presumption in favour of development” - in a government circular of 1923. I was aware that the presumption in favour of development went back to the early 1920s, but I had not previously been able to track down the precise document which set it out. It was Circular 368, published on 29th January 1923. See David’s blog for further details.


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