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    "He clearly has a passion for the subject, is always in command of his papers and is good on his feet."

    Chambers and Partners, Ned Westaway

Ned Westaway

Year of call: 2009

Practice areas: Planning, Environment, Licensing, Major Infrastructure Projects, Local Government, Regulatory Crime, Ecclesiastical Law and Religious Liberty, Rating, Public Law, European Law

Public Access

Ned Westaway

Practice Overview

Ned is instructed in a wide variety of work, in particular across all planning and environmental law contexts.

He is ranked by Chambers and Partners under Planning, Environment and Agricultural & Rural Affairs.  Ned is currently ranked 1st in Planning magazine's legal survey of Barristers under the age of 35.  Who's Who Legal 2016 lists him as a leading junior for environment law who is ''extremely active'' in the sector.

Ned regularly appears at public inquiries in planning, environmental and highways matters as well as examination hearings for major infrastructure projects. He has an active High Court practice and is on the Attorney General's Panel of London counsel.  Recent work in the senior courts includes R (Campaign to Protect Rural England) v Dover DC [2015] EWHC 3808 (Admin), Athlone House Ltd v SSCLG [2015] EWHC 3524 (Admin), Forster v SSCLG [2015] EWHC 2367 (Admin) and RSPB v SSEFRA [2015] EWCA Civ 227.  Ned is a Trustee of the United Kingdom Environmental Law Association and acts as counsel for the Campaign for National Parks.  He regularly undertakes work pro bono and is accredited to take work on a direct public access basis.

The main areas of Ned's practice are:

  • Environmental
  • Planning
  • Highways, rights of way, commons and village greens
  • Local Government
  • Licensing
  • Land/property law
  • Public Law

Please select 'Practice Areas' for further information under each of these headings.

  • ''He is incredibly bright, hard-working and easy to work with''; ''He clearly has a passion for the subject, is always in command of his papers and is good on his feet.''
    Chambers and Partners 2016, Environment

  • ''He has a very, very good, sharp mind and adopts a very thorough approach to his preparation of cases''; ''He is down-to-earth and practical in all aspects of his advice.''
    Chambers and Partners 2016, Planning

  • ''He has a good command of the planning process and is very strategic...''; ''He rolls up his sleeves and gets stuck in, and is easy to work with.''
    Chambers and Partners 2016, Agriculture & Rural Affairs

Practice Areas

Highways, rights of way, commons and village greens
Local government
Land / property law
Other areas 


Ned has considerable expertise and experience in environmental law, including nature conservation, nuisance, water, waste and contaminated land. He has acted for the Environment Agency, the Marine Management Organisation and Natural England and has a thorough understanding of pollution control, marine and habitats law. Recent work includes challenges to waste facilities (the Whitemoss hazardous waste NSIP and the Beddington Energy Recovery Facility), the RPSB's judicial review of the bird cull at the Ribble and Alt Estuary Special Protection Area in Lancashire in the Court of Appeal (RSPB v SSEFRA [2015] EWCA Civ 227) and advice on fisheries byelaws.

Ned regularly advises on environmental assessment.  He was junior to Robert McCracken QC in R (Evans) v Basingstoke and Deane BC [2013] EWCA Civ 1635, a case that considered the compatibility of planning enforcement time limits with EIA law and was instructed by Friends of the Earth in its Supreme Court intervention on the appeal of the Northern Ireland Court of Appeal's decision in Central Craigavon Ltd's Application for Judicial Review [2011] NICA 17.  Ned acted for Natural England successfully resisting a challenge to a condition designed to protect EU habitats in R (Feeney) v SST [2013] EWHC 1238 (Admin).

In respect of criminal work, Ned has acted both for prosecutors and defendants. He recently acted for a national construction firm avoiding prosecution proceedings for the alleged demolition of buildings within a West London conservation area without consent.  He has given training on investigatory powers and the PACE codes.  Ned also has extensive knowledge of the new civil sanctions regime for environmental offences; he contributed to the leading text book and is well-placed to act and/or advise and act in this new area of law.

Other cases of note include:

  • CPRE's challenge to Dover District Council's grant of planning permission to major housing development in the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (R (CPRE) v Dover DC [2015] EWHC 3808 (Admin))
  • Appearing for Natural England at the inquiry into the called-in application for a 67 hectare solar array at Wroughton Airfield near Swindon
  • Successfully challenging the grant of permission for the redevelopment of Hartley's Brewery in Ulverston due to inadequate consideration given to heritage protection (R (Hughes) v South Lakeland DC [2014] EWHC 3979 (Admin)
  • Acting with Robert McCracken QC for INEOS ChlorVinyls at the inquiry into monitoring conditions for the waste incinerator at its Runcorn chemical plant
  • Representing the Wisely Golf Club in its prosecution by the Environment Agency for various alleged offences under the Thames Region Land Drainage Byelaws
  • Acting for East Sussex County Council successfully resisting permission a challenge of its alleged failure to take action to prevent the flooding of property off the highway
  • Acting for BAE Systems in its appeal against Natural England's refusal to licence bird control measures in a European protected conservation area
  • Representing the Wyatt brothers in their appeal against committal for contempt for breaching planning enforcement notices in the Court of Appeal
  • Acting with Gregory Jones QC for the claimant in R (U & Partners (East Anglia) Ltd) v Broads Authority [2011] EWHC 1824 (Admin), a challenge to the Environment Agency's flood control works in Norfolk, which confirmed that the requirement of "promptitude" does not apply to judicial reviews under the EIA Directive

Ned is recognised as a leading junior in environmental law by Chambers and Partners which comments that he is ''hotly tipped by sources as a man with a bright future at the Environmental Bar'' (2014) and that ''he will be one of the greats of the future'' (2015).  He Ned regularly talks and writes on environmental law and has an LLM (environmental laws) from UCL, where he is a visiting researcher.


He has a solid and practical knowledge of planning law including high profile development proposals and technical enforcement or lawful development certificate work.  Ned has acted for applicants, local authorities and third party objectors in many different contexts, he also has experience of major infrastructure cases under the Planning Act 2008 and the preceding legislation: he has advised and appeared at examinations into the following DCO applications: the Able Marine Energy Park on the Humber Estuary, the Thames Tideway Tunnel and the Navitus Bay Wind Farm, where he presented the successful objection on behalf of Natural England. 

Recent hearing and inquiry work includes gypsy and traveller proposals in Norfolk and Yorkshire, housing appeals in Oxfordshire and certificate of lawfulness appeals in London.  Ned also has experience of blight notice and compulsory purchase.  He appeared with James Pereira QC for Hillingdon and the Canal and River Trust in the Southall Gas Works CPO inquiry in June 2015.

Ned is acting and has acted in a number of planning judicial reviews and statutory challenges, including Forster v SSCLG [2015] EWHC 2367 (Admin), R (CPRE) v Dover DC [2015] EWHC 3808 (Admin)), R (Harper) v South Oxfordshire DC [2014] EWHC 1331 (Admin), R (Evans) v Basingstoke and Deane BC [2013] EWCA Civ 1635, R (Feeney) v SST [2013] EWHC 1238 (Admin) and R (U & Partners (East Anglia) Ltd) v Broads Authority [2011] EWHC 1824 (Admin).

He has wide experience of lawful development certificate, planning enforcement, prosecution and committal proceedings, notable cases in these areas include Kestrel Hydro v SSCLG [2015] EWHC 1654 (Admin), due to be heard in the Court of Appeal in 2016, Pathfield Estates Ltd v Haringey LBC [2013] EWHC 2053 (Admin) and Oxfordshire CC v Wyatt Brothers (Oxford) Ltd [2012] EWCA Civ 1921.

Other cases of note include:

  • Appearing with Morag Ellis QC for Camden in Athlone House Ltd v SSCLG [2015] EWHC 3524 (Admin), a challenge to the refusal of an appeal for controversial redevelopment proposals on Metropolitan Open Land
  • Acting for the promoter of a large inland marina at Ratcliffe-on-Soar on appeal against Nottinghamshire County Council's non-determination of the application
  • Appearing for a local action group opposing wind development that would have an impact on Southwell Minster in Nottinghamshire
  • Acting for the MMO in its representations on the draft Northern Line Extension Transport and Works Act Order
  • Acting for Natural England at the resumed inquiry into the Transport and Works Act Order for Chiltern Railway's Oxford-Bicester line upgrade
  • Resisting a contested appeal against Kings Lynn and West Norfolk BC's refusal to issue a certificate of lawful use (reported at JPL 2012 (7) 858-876)
  • Appearing with Keith Lindblom QC (as he then was) for the Friends of St Katharine Docks in their successful third party objection to major redevelopment proposals
  • Making representations to the Examination in Public of the latest version of the London Plan, England's only surviving Regional Strategy
  • Successfully acting for the appellant in a planning enforcement appeal regarding houseboats on the Driffield Navigation, Yorkshire (Planning Magazine, 22 October 2010, page 35) - his first planning inquiry

Ned is recognised as a leading junior in planning law by Chambers and Partners which comments ''he's excellent ... very calm and articulate, very quick on his feet, and thinks strategically" (2015) and ''[he] is absolutely fantastic, does excellent work and is a roaring success'' (2014).  His is listed as the top rated junior under the age of 35 by Planning magazine 2016.

Highways, rights of way, commons and village greens


Ned regularly appears at village green inquiries for landowners and local inhabitants. He has an excellent knowledge of the practice and procedures of village green law and has benefited greatly from working with village green experts at FTB and from his time as pupil to Philip Petchey. Ned acted for Long Live Southbank in their recent challenge to Lambeth Council's interpretation of 'trigger events' to preclude a village green application for the undercroft skate park beneath Queen Elizabeth Hall.  He also represented local inhabitants in two cases on the de-registration of town and village greens under section 14 of the Commons Registration Act 1965 in the Supreme Court: Taylor v Betterment Properties (Weymouth) Ltd and Paddico (267) Ltd v Adamson: [2014] UKSC 7.

Ned also regularly advises on commons and rights of way issues, and has appeared at inquiries under the Commons Act 2006, Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 and Highways Act 1980. He has acted for order-making authorities, footpath users, amenity groups (including the British Horse Society) and landowners. He recently acted for Ashfield DC and Muse Developments Ltd in relation to the proposed diversion of a footpath at Hucknall to facilitate redevelopment of the Rolls Royce site.

Other cases of note include:

  • Acting for Save Chaucer Fields at the inquiry to register the slopes to the south of the university in Canterbury as a village green, the case involved the determination of a preliminary issue about the retrospective effect of s.15(7)(b) of the Commons Act 2006
  • Represented Kent County Council at the inquiry into its making of concurrent stopping up and diversion orders along Faversham Creek
  • Acting for East Sussex County Council and successfully upholding its objection to a definitive map modification order that sought to downgrade a restricted byway to a footpath in the parishes of Heathfield and Warbleton
  • Successfully resisting the confirmation of a definitive map modification order to upgrade a footpath across the Squerryes Estate in Kent to a bridleway based on evidence from 1957-1977
  • Acting for the Linden Homes in its successful objection to an application to register the 'Public Square' outside of Willesden Green Library Centre as a town or village green
  • Acting for Islington LBC in its successful objection to an application to register housing estate land at Marie Lloyd Gardens as a town or village green
  • Acting for the successful landowner in the Rydens Way case (junior counsel to Douglas Edwards QC), the case was heard as a non-statutory inquiry on the legal point only and established that the doctrine of res judicata applies to prevent repeat village green applications in relation to the same area of land (reported at JPL 2012 (4) 497-520
  • Representing the Epping Forest Riders Association in their objection to Essex County Council's introduction of cattle grids to the Epping Forest
  • Appearing for Shipbourne Parish Council in their successful opposition to the controversial proposed diversion of a footpath in the Kent Downs AONB

Ned regularly writes and advises on highways issues and recently presented the highways law update to the London Planning Forum, he has also carried out training for the RWLR and the Planning Inspectorate's Rights of Way division.

Local government

Ned has a good understanding of local government law and regularly advises local authorities on a range of public law issues, including the extent of their duties and the scope of their powers.  He has acted in housing possession and disrepair claims, advised on the funding arrangements for academies and drafted pre-action correspondence on the lawfulness of local authority constitutional arrangements.  He has also been involved in a number of matters relating to the provisions in the Localism Act 2011, including review hearings and appeals under section 92 (assets of community value). 

In the rating context, Ned was successful counsel for the local authority in Edem v Basingstoke and Deane BC [2012] EWHC 2433 (Admin), a case on council tax exemptions. 

Ned regularly appears in the Magistrates' Court and has experience prosecuting and defending local authority cases.  Among other things, he has drafted proceedings and settled papers for ASBO claims, prosecuted planning and social security matters and defended prosecutions for offences under the Housing Act 2004 (and HMO Regulations).


Ned has appeared before local authority representatives and the Magistrates' Court in relation to premises license applications and appeals. He has acted for operators in Islington and Tower Hamlets and for a number of local authorities, including Medway Council and Southwark Council.

Cases include:

  • Negotiating the lifting of a closure notice against premises in Lambeth
  • Preventing action being taken against central London premises where allegations of breaches of conditions within a cumulative impact zone
  • Acting for Lewisham Council successfully resisting appeals against its refusal to renew street trading licences
  • Acting for Southwark Council successfully resisting an appeal against its decision to revoke the premises licence for Club Couture in Camberwell
  • Acting for Medway Council in appeals against its refusal to grant new licences and decisions to vary premises licences
  • Acting pro bono for Lincoln's Inn obtaining an extension to the premises licence for the Great and Old Halls

Ned is a member of the Institute of Licensing and gives presentations on licensing matters, including most recently on Government's proposals for the reform of regulated entertainment.

Land / property law

Ned has advised on easements, restrictive covenants and landlord and tenant issues. He has acted for HMRC and the Valuation Office Agency in the Upper Tribunal on rating and land valuation matters, including Chakravorty v Revenue and Customs Commissioners [2014] UKUT 184 (LC).  Ned has also appeared in front of the Tribunal to the Land Registry and has dealt with boundary disputes in the Magistrates Court.

Other areas

Ned undertakes work in other areas of public law such as education, immigration and community care. He acts for the Home Office (see eg Onos v SSHD [2016] EWHC 59 (Admin)).  He also has experience as an advocate in Employment Tribunal claims and social security cases.

Awards and Education

  • Winner, UKELA Lord Slynn of Hadley senior mooting competition (2009 and 2010), on both occasions before Carnwath LJ
  • Lord Denning Scholarship, Lincoln's Inn (2008)
  • LLM (environmental laws), University of London (2007)
  • DMH Stallard Prize for the best results on the Common Professional Examination (distinction) University of Sussex (2006)
  • BA Classics (first class degree), UCL (2004), recognised on the Dean's List
  • Brighton, Hove and Sussex VI Form College
  • Lewes Priory School



Quarterly Environmental Law Update, 3 November 2016

A three hour afternoon seminar covering the latest developments of law and policy in the environmental field.  There will be an opportunity to ask questions and a panel discussion.