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Commercial Property News

Wind Turbines and Heritage Buildings

Written on February 20, 2014 at 7:00 am

In a case which underlined the special regard that planners must have to the setting of heritage buildings, a local authority has succeeded in its High Court challenge to plans for an 86-metre high wind turbine, which it claimed would spoil the surroundings of prized local monuments. In overturning a Government planning inspector’s decision to… Read More »

Supreme Court Defines Aggravated Trespass

Written on February 7, 2014 at 7:00 am

Shops and other commercial premises targeted by campaign groups will be afforded greater protection in future after the Supreme Court upheld the aggravated trespass convictions of two men who invaded a cosmetics store that they believed took its supplies from Palestinian territory occupied by Israel. The shop specialised in selling products based on minerals from… Read More »

Supreme Court Rules on Town or Village Greens

Written on February 6, 2014 at 7:00 am

Property developers whose plans are frequently thwarted by registration of land as a town or village green can take encouragement from a Supreme Court decision which significantly eases the path to rectification if such registrations are wrongly granted. Two plots of open land had been registered as town or village greens under the Commons Registration… Read More »

Higher Education Institutions Face VAT Hike on Residences

Written on February 5, 2014 at 7:00 am

HM Revenue and Customs have issued a notice withdrawing the extra-statutory concession relating to new student residences from 1 April 2015. The concession allows universities and other Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) to ignore vacation use of residences when determining whether or not the residence is intended to be used solely for a ‘relevant residential purpose’… Read More »

New Public Procurement Rules Announced

Written on January 24, 2014 at 10:14 am

New procurement rules for public bodies will affect businesses, especially those that have a chequered past. Under the new EU Public Procurement Directive, authorities placing contracts will be able to consider social criteria in making their decisions. Indeed, the Directive states that the price should no longer be the ‘central determining factor’ for placing contracts.… Read More »

Avalanche of Office to Home Conversions Imminent

Written on January 9, 2014 at 7:00 am

London councils who were refused exemptions from a fundamental shift in planning policy – designed to tackle the acute housing shortage by allowing the wholesale conversion of offices into homes without planning consent – have failed to convince the High Court that they were treated unfairly. The London Boroughs of Islington and Richmond-upon-Thames, with the… Read More »

Out-of-Town Retailers Win Business Rates Debate

Written on January 6, 2014 at 7:00 am

Tenants of England’s most valuable out-of-town retail park have achieved a 10 per cent reduction in their business rates after convincing a tribunal that their trade was significantly hit by the £350 million extension of a town centre shopping centre. The Fosse Park retail park is located 4.3 miles south west of Leicester city centre… Read More »

Surveyors Not Liable for Shop Front Accident

Written on December 5, 2013 at 7:00 am

In giving important guidance on the vexed issue of duties owed by professionals to those who are not their clients and to the public in general, the Court of Appeal has cleared surveyors of all responsibility for a freak accident in which a shop fascia detached and fell onto the pavement, causing serious injury to… Read More »

‘Offices to Homes’ Policy Comes Under High Court Fire

Written on December 4, 2013 at 7:00 am

In a crucial test case for businesses and property professionals, local authorities who say that they were unfairly refused exemptions from controversial changes in planning rules that allowed wholesale conversion of offices into homes have taken their complaints to the High Court. The London Boroughs of Islington, Richmond-upon-Thames, Camden and Lambeth argue that, amidst rocketing… Read More »

‘Once in a Lifetime’ Development Triggers Court Row

Written on November 25, 2013 at 7:00 am

A falling out between four businessmen in relation to a ‘once in a lifetime’ opportunity to develop 1,000 new homes on the Isle of Wight has culminated in a High Court ruling that two of them breached their fiduciary duties in seeking to freeze their colleagues out of the deal. Businessmen A and B were… Read More »