A Judicial Review of City of Edinburgh Council’s planning policy has now been instructed. This specifically focuses on the retrospectivity of applying planning policies, but it may well have ramifications outwith Planning Control Areas.
This follows the Judicial Review of licensing in June 2023 where the Court of Session found that the City of Edinburgh Council’s short-term let licensing policy was unlawful at common law and in breach of The Provision of Services Regulations 2009. Most strikingly, Lord Braid found that it was not for the Council, as licensing authority, to decide that a licence should not be granted just because a property is in a tenement. This is critical in ongoing discussion regarding the duplication of licensing and planning regimes.
City of Edinburgh Council have decided not to appeal and have subsequently amended their policy on licensing. We hope for a similar successful outcome with the Judicial Review in respect of planning.
This is not action which the petitioners take lightly but due to the perverse, onerous and manifestly unfair nature of the regulations, there is little option but to challenge this in the courts. We will endeavour to keep you updated with the latest developments.
Elsewhere in Scotland, Highland Council has had to suspend the designation of its Planning Control Area in Badenoch & Strathspey on the basis that the policy may be unlawful. They are seeking independent legal advice.
Furthermore, Perth & Kinross Council is currently consulting on introducing a Planning Control Area. This consultation closes on 18th August. We will be keeping a close eye on this. Please respond here: https://consult.pkc.gov.uk/communities/proposed-short-term-let-control-area-and-draft-pla/