Actions speak louder than words – how deferential will the courts really be to sanctions decisions made by the Government?

In Shvidler v Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs [2023] EWHC 2121 (Admin), the High Court commented that questions of evidence concerning designating specific individuals under the sanctions regime were not entirely questions of foreign policy on which the court is unqualified to form a view, nor a subject on which the … Read more

Courts consider public authorities’ duty to consult

Two recent judgments relating to consultation outline the fact and context specific nature of this area. In one decision, the Court of Appeal overturned the High Court’s finding that the Government’s National Disability Strategy was unlawful on the basis that the voluntary exercise undertaken did not meet the requirements of a fair consultation (R (on … Read more

When can a public authority withdraw its own decision?

In R. (on the application of Piffs Elm Ltd) v Commission for Local Administration in England [2023] EWCA Civ 486, the Court of Appeal considered the withdrawal of a decision by the Local Government Ombudsman (the “Ombudsman“), and in doing so, provided useful commentary regarding the limits of a public authority’s implied powers. Key Points … Read more

High Court upholds decision maker’s broad discretion in relation to impact of emissions of proposed airport expansion

In Bristol Airport Action Network Co-ordinating Committee v Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities [2023] EWHC 171 (Admin), the High Court dismissed a challenge brought primarily on climate change grounds by various local environmental groups and residents to the grant of planning permission for the expansion of Bristol Airport. Key points Planning … Read more

High Court quashes refusal of development consent for energy project

Judgment was handed down in the High Court today by Mrs Justice Lieven in the case of R (on the application of AQUIND Limited) v Secretary of State for BEIS and others [2023] EWHC 98 (Admin). Mrs Justice Lieven found in favour of the Claimant, AQUIND Limited, represented by Herbert Smith Freehills LLP. The judgment … Read more