Practice Profile

Craig Howell Williams KC specialises in planning, environment and related areas of public law. He is acknowledged as one of the leading practitioners in the field and has acted in some of the most high profile cases.

Craig is consistently rated as a leading planning silk in Chambers and Partners Directory and in Legal 500, as well as a top rated planning silk in the Planning Magazine Survey. Commendations in recent directories include: “Craig is a master strategist.”; “The trust you can place in the quality of his case preparation is without comparison – and that thoroughness shines through with the clients come the execution of the case at the inquiry or hearing”; "a fantastic advocate and adviser”; “A go-to on planning and CPO matters"; "intellectually smart and astute"; “a superb barrister”; “his cross-examination is courteous and polite but ruthlessly effective”; “incredibly hardworking and a modern silk”; “great to work with, great with clients and gives top notch advice and representation”. 

He represents developers and operators, local authorities, third parties and others at public inquiries and in a range of other tribunals. He is regularly involved in large planning/major infrastructure schemes such as proposals for urban extensions, new settlements, airport expansions, new road and rail schemes, employment, leisure, retail and other commercial development projects and in development plan matters.
His experience is extensive with versatility across many different kinds of legislative regime, including planning and infrastructure, DCOs and TWA orders, highways, heritage and listed buildings, compulsory purchase and compensation, wildlife and countryside legislation and outdoor advertising.

Craig was appointed and served as Junior Counsel to the Crown (B Panel) and has since then appeared in a number of significant court cases.

Craig was appointed by the Secretary of State to serve as the Lead Assistant Commissioner for the West Midlands region to hold hearings and report into proposals to modify Parliamentary constituency boundaries.

Craig is also a CEDR Accredited Mediator and a RICS Accredited Evaluative Mediator, a member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and a member of the RICS President's Mediation Panel. He was also appointed to serve on the first DCLG's Planning Mediation Services Panel. (See his separate ADR/mediation profile). 
 

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Craig has extensive experience and a wide ranging practice in the field of planning law. He is acknowledged as one of the leading practitioners in the field and has acted in some of the most high profile cases. He represents developers and operators, local authorities, third parties and others at public inquiries and in a range of other tribunals. He is regularly involved in large planning/major infrastructure schemes (such as proposals for urban extensions, new settlements, airport expansions, new road and rail infrastructure), DCOs and TWA Orders, Parliamentary Bills; and also in employment, leisure, retail and other commercial development projects. 
His court work in relation to planning cases is separately noted under Public Law.

Craig is consistently rated as one of the leading planning silks in Chambers and Partners and Legal 500, and was voted a top-rated silk in the Planning Magazine Survey 2022. Commendations in recent directories include: “Craig is a master strategist.”; “The trust you can place in the quality of his case preparation is without comparison – and that thoroughness shines through with the clients come the execution of the case at the inquiry or hearing”; "a fantastic advocate and adviser”; “A go-to on planning and CPO matters"; "intellectually smart and astute"; “a superb barrister”; “his cross-examination is courteous and polite but ruthlessly effective”; “incredibly hardworking and a modern silk”; “great to work with, great with clients and gives top notch advice and representation”. 

Craig is also a CEDR Accredited Mediator and a RICS Accredited Evaluative Mediator, a member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and a member of the RICS President's Mediation Panel. He was also appointed to serve on the first DCLG's Planning Mediation Services Panel. (See his separate ADR/mediation profile).

He is particular experience in:

Strategic Land, New Settlements and Urban Extensions
Residential, Mixed Use and Employment Development Schemes
Development Plans
Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas
Retail
Leisure and Entertainment
Highways
Waste, Mines, Quarrying and Aggregates Levy
Energy and Utilities
Outdoor Advertising
Religious and Faith Buildings, Cemeteries and Burial Space

Strategic Land, New Settlements and Urban Extensions:

Craig acts for developers and national house builders as well as for local planning authorities. He advises at all stages of a proposed scheme from application to the appeal or local plan examination stage. 

His previous work includes:

  • South West Milton Keynes, a large urban extension proposal adjoining Milton Keynes on behalf of the consortium developers (on appeal)
  • North of Luton, a large urban extension proposal adjoining Luton on behalf of a consortium (at local plan examination)
  • a large urban extension to the east of Luton on behalf of Bloor Homes (local plan examination)
  • an urban extension to Brookmans Park in Welwyn Hatfield on behalf of the Hill Group (at local plan examination)
  • an urban extension to Tenterden in Kent on behalf of Ashford BC (at appeal)
  • a new village in the Green Belt on behalf of Elmbridge BC (at appeal)
  • strategic land proposals in the context of local plans on behalf of local planning authorities eg for Cherwell DC and Vale of White Horse Council (at local plan examination)
  • the promotion of housing land allocations in local plans on behalf of developers or landowners eg the Monmouth Local Plan, the Horley Local Plan, the Surrey Heath Local Plan, the Alyesbury Local Plan
  • Teignbridge, an inquiry into proposals for the expansion of the town on behalf of the developers
  • Connolly Homes, in relation to equalisation, s106 obligations and an urban extension to Milton Keynes
  • Elsenham, an urban extension following on from an eco-town proposal in Essex on behalf of the developers (at appeal)
  • Aylesbury, acting on behalf of a landowners' consortium in relation to the town's expansion (at local plan examination) 
  • Ashford, acting on behalf of the Church Commissioners in relation to land proposed for the expansion of Ashford (at appeal)
  • Robert Hitchins Ltd, various landholdings and development schemes in Gloucestershire and the Forest of Dean (at appeal and local plan examination)
  • Pye (Oxford) Ltd, a new settlement proposal in Oxfordshire on behalf of Pye (Oxford)
  • an appeal into urban extension at Theale for British Land/Countryside Properties 
  • Mereham, an inquiry into a proposal for a new settlement near Cambridge on behalf of Multiplex Stannifer
  • Church Crookham, a large urban extension at Fleet in Hampshire on behalf of Taylor Wimpey (at appeal)

Residential, Mixed Use and Employment Development Schemes:

Craig acts for developers and national house builders as well as for local planning authorities. He advises at all stages of a proposed scheme from application to the appeal or local plan examination stage. 

His previous work includes:

  • South West Milton Keynes, a large urban extension proposal adjoining Milton Keynes on behalf of the consortium developers (on appeal)
  • Connolly Homes, in relation to equalisation, s106 obligations and an urban extension to Milton Keynes
  • a new village in the Green Belt on behalf of Elmbridge BC (on appeal)
  • a local plan proposal for a garden village in Northumberland 
  • strategic land proposals in the context of local plans on behalf of local planning authorities eg for Cherwell DC and Vale of White Horse Council
  • an appeal relating to housing development in the Green Belt for Surrey Heath BC;
  • an appeal relating to the proposed change of use of employment land to residential use in High Wycombe for Wycombe BC
  • an appeal relating to a large logistics development adjoining the Kent AONB for Gallagher Properties Ltd
  • an appeal relating to the proposed change of use of employment land to residential use in Fleet for Helical Bar
  • the promotion of housing land in the Horley Local Plan for Martin Grant Homes
  • the promotion of housing land in the Surrey Heath Local Plan for Bryant Homes
  • the promotion of housing land in the Aylesbury Local Plan on behalf of a consortium of developers
  • the promotion of housing land allocations in the Monmouth Local Plan for Harrington Properties
  • an appeal into an urban extension in Church Crookham for Taylor Woodrow/Wimpey
  • an appeal into urban extension at Theale for British Land/Countryside Properties
  • appeals and local plan appearances relating to a variety of residential schemes in the south east for Laing Homes and Charles Church
  • appeals and local plan appearances relating to a variety of residential schemes in the south west for Robert Hitchins Ltd

His experience in this sector has also included residential or mixed use schemes of special interest, such as:

  • an inquiry into a redevelopment of urban site with ‘tall building’ in settings of important heritage buildings in RB Greenwich 
  • an inquiry into an urban regeneration scheme with ‘tall buildings’ in Basildon on behalf of LB Basildon 
  • advice on the redevelopment of a large site in Central London for mixed leisure/media use
  • an inquiry into a redevelopment of a large town centre site for education use on behalf of LB Bromley 
  • a local plan hearing into residential development in Green Belt on land owned by Royal Veterinary College, with local economic and employment benefits accruing
  • development of Green Belt land for significant employment provision in Merseyside 
  • development of open green space for school use on behalf of LB Bromley 
  • Petrol filling station developments in Yorkshire and Kent on behalf of BP
  • an appeal relating to a retirement homes development in Seaford
  • an appeal relating to a retirement village in Cumbria
  • as appeal into new student accommodation in Reading
  • basement developments in West London
  • an inquiry into a green eco-infrastructure mews development in Portobello Road;
  • the Power House proposal, an inquiry into a major residential scheme adjoining two conservation areas in Chelsea designed by Piers Gough
  • advising Brunel University in relation to development on Green Belt land
  • the Hurstbourne Priors proposal, an inquiry into a PPS7 exceptions house designed by Robert Adam
  • an "eco-retreat" in Leicestershire

Development Plans:

Craig has been involved in many development plan cases, including representation for developers and local authorities at inquiries and examinations.

His previous work includes:

  • advised on and promoted numerous development schemes on behalf of developers and land owners (see above under strategic development/residential/mixed use schemes etc)
  • advised on and represented at examination the Greater Norwich Local Plan
  • advising on Hertsmere BC Local Plan
  • advising on the Surrey Heath BC Local Plan
  • advising on the Southend-on-Sea BC Local Plan
  • advised on the Reg 18 stage Elmbridge BC Local Plan
  • advised on and represented at examination the Bromley Local Plan
  • advised on and represented at examination the Cherwell Local Plan
  • advised on and represented at examination the Vale of White Horse Local Plan
  • advising Northumberland Council on its local plan scheme
  • numerous objections to local plans (eg Central Bedfordshire, Welwyn and Hatfield, North Hertfordshire, Peterborough, Aylesbury Vale, Kensington and Chelsea, Horley, Monmouth)
  • numerous objections to Core Strategies and other Development Plan Documents (eg Vale of Aylesbury Plan, Uttlesford Core Strategy)
  • advised on and represented at examination the Surrey Heath Borough Local Plan
  • a high court challenge to the South East Plan (on behalf of Pye (Oxford))

Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas:

Craig’s previous work where heritage issues have had particular importance include:

  • S78 inquiry into ‘tall building’ proposal in settings of important heritage buildings in RB Greenwich
  • advice in relation to a housing scheme in the setting of a Grade 1 18 Century Country House in educational use and associated design and viability issues
  • an inquiry relating to a large B8 development proposal near Maidstone, one important issue being the effect of the proposal on heritage assets including Leeds Castle and its Registered Garden
  • an inquiry relating to a rail freight interchange development proposal in Kent, one important issue being the effect on a conservation area and the setting of Thurnham Castle
  • an inquiry relating to proposed alterations to a grade II* building in Savile Row on behalf of Abercrombie and Fitch
  • the Camberley Mosque proposal, an inquiry into a large mosque proposal in a Conservation Area on behalf of Surrey Heath Borough Council
  • advice in relation to development implications for the Chichester Walls
  • Hampden Court House, a hearing into an enforcement notice and planning appeals relating to proposals for a change of use of a listed building within grounds listed grade 2* in the Register of Parks and Gardens of Special Interest, near to grade 2* structures, all situated in a Conservation Area
  • the North Foreland Lighthouse scheme, an inquiry into a proposal for a radar tower near to a listed lighthouse on the Kent coast on behalf of the HM Coastguard/Maritime Agency
  • the Hurstbourne Priors proposal, an inquiry into a PPS7 exceptions house designed by Robert Adam
  • the Power House proposal, an inquiry into a major residential scheme adjoining two conservation areas in Chelsea designed by Piers Gough

Retail:
Craig has advised and appeared at inquiries into appeals on a number of occasions, including:

  • for Aldi (various)
  • for Northampton BC (Sixfields Retail Park)
  • for Ashfield Land Ltd (Bideford)
  • for Somerfield Stores (St Helens)
  • for Carter Commercial Developments Ltd (Clacton and Frinton on Sea)
  • for Tesco Stores Ltd (Ashford, Sevenoaks, Greenwich, Leicester, Thames Ditton, Chepstow, Daventry, Pinner, Lincoln, Walsall, Burnage and Stretford)
  • for J Sainsbury (Kingston upon Thames)
  • for Safeway (Peterborough, Fylde and Cromer)
  • for others in relation to retail aspects of mixed use and strategic developments

Appearances at Local Plan or Unitary Development Plan inquiries include: for Tesco Stores Ltd (Tooting, Merton, Hammersmith and Fulham, Thame, Hounslow, Newnham and Derbyshire Dales).

Craig appeared in the High Court on a case relating to the application of the sequential test on behalf of Hillingdon BC (R (on application Sainsbury Ltd) v Hillingdon BC, Arla Foods Ltd [2015] EWHC (Admin) 2571. He has advised Aldi in relation to two High Court challenges. 

Leisure and Entertainment:

Craig has been involved in a number of significant leisure development proposals.

Representation at inquiries into appeal proposals for leisure developments include:

  • the Woburn Forest Centre Parcs, for Centre Parcs
  • the Caprice Restaurant in Grosvenor Square, for Westminster City Council
  • polo facilities in the Green Belt in Berkshire
  • an inquiry into development of Metropolitan Open Land
  • a golf course adjoining Rutland Water
  • a shooting range in the Green Belt near St Albans

Advice on leisure proposals and other matters include:

  • golf course development in Essex and in Crawley
  • an "eco-retreat" in Leicestershire
  • leisure aspects of mixed use and strategic developments
  • changes of use for public houses
  • restaurants in West London

Highways:

Craig has experience of a number of significant highways projects, including advice on and/or representation at appeal/TWA Order/CPO inquiries.

His previous work in this sector includes:

  • Moto Hospitality Ltd v. The Highways Agency, a claim under Section 10 of the Compulsory Purchase Act 1995 in the Lands Tribunal and the Court of Appeal (for Moto)
  • the Chieveley junction, a CPO inquiry in relation to proposals for widening the A34/M4 Junction (for Chieveley Parish Council)
  • motorway and road infrastructure related to the Heathrow Terminal 5 proposal for the local authorities
  • the East London River Crossing (for the London Docklands Development Corporation)
  • CPO inquiries into roads in London docklands (eg the Lower Lea Crossing, the Poplar Link) (for the LDDC)

Waste, Mines, Quarrying and Aggregates Levy:

Craig’s previous work in this sector includes:

  • Longstone Edge, enforcement proceedings and litigation relating to open cast fluorspar mining activities in the Derbyshire National Park, on behalf of the mineral operator
  • an enforcement inquiry into alleged breaches of ROMP conditions relating to the restoration of a Fullers Earth Quarry in Bedfordshire on behalf of Laporte Industries.
  • Advice and representation into waste disposal projects, for Grundons 
  • an inquiry into Fullers Earth extraction near Redhill, Surrey
  • Craig has advised or represented clients in cases relating to aggregates levy:
  • advice in relation to liability to levy arising from the construction of an underground hydro-electric power station in Scotland
  • appeals in relation to liability to levy arising from mining activities in the National Park in Derbyshire, in the VAT and Duties Tribunal and the High Court [2009] STC 1969 on behalf of MMC Minerals Processing Ltd instructed by Eversheds
  • advice in relation to liability created by the construction of the Channel Tunnel Link, instructed by Union Railways (North) Limited
  • Customs and Excise Commissioners v. East Midlands Aggregates Ltd, a claim under the provisions of the Finance Act legislation for exemption from levy in the VAT and Duties Tribunal and the Chancery Division of the High Court [2005] 1 P&CR 11, on behalf of East Midlands Aggregates Ltd instructed by Hewitsons

Energy and Utilities:

Craig's planning experience has often included issues relating to energy and utilities infrastructure (eg in the context of large planning/infrastructure schemes).

His previous also work includes:

  • the proposed E.ON Rampion Offshore Windfarm DCO on behalf of a Southern Water Services as the water and waste statutory undertaker
  • litigation advice in relation to a proposal for the extraction of Coal Bed Methane gas for Composite Energy Ltd
  • the Abberton Scheme, an inquiry into a large scale water transfer and storage scheme on behalf of the water company
  • an inquiry under the Electricity legislation relating to the retention of pylons (via wayleave renewals) across London docklands on behalf of the London Docklands Development Corporation
  • As Mediator, a claim concerning a blight notice served in relation to rights to be acquired as part of an energy related DCO proposal in the South West of England

Outdoor Advertising:

Craig has given advice to and appeared at inquiries and on behalf of a number of outdoor advertisement companies, including: JC Decaux, Van Wagner UK Ltd, Ad-Air and Ocean Outdoor. He has also advised on a major redevelopment scheme in Central London for leisure/media use. 

Religious and Faith Buildings, Cemeteries and Burial Space:

Craig acted for Surrey Heath Borough Council in the appeal relating to a large Mosque proposal in Camberley. He also successfully promoted at appeal a proposal for a cemetery of c10,000 Muslim graves in the Green Belt on behalf of the registered charity landowner.
 

Craig's is often involved in large planning/major infrastructure schemes, such as proposals for airport expansions and roads or rail infrastructure. 
His court work in relation to this area of law is separately noted under Public Law.
His previous work includes:

  • DCOs: 
    • advice on a proposed road/rail intermodal distribution development in the East Midlands for Goodman Logistics 
    • advice on compensation issues arising following DCO for strategic rail freight interchange
    • the M4 J3-5 "smart" Motorway Proposals on behalf of Hillingdon BC
    • the proposed E.ON Rampion Offshore Windfarm DCO on behalf of a Southern Water Services
  • Parliament bills:
    • HS2 on behalf of petitioners (including the Grafton Group and Slough BC)
    • the proposed London Underground (Northern Line Extension) Order on behalf of a major developer objector
    • the proposed Crossrail (Kensal Green) Order on behalf of a major landowner objector
    • the London Docklands Light Railway Bill on behalf of Rosehaugh Stanhope
    • rail infrastructure on behalf of British Rail
  • TWA projects and objections to rail proposals including Crossrail and the Northern Line extension
  • High Court and Court of Appeal litigation relating to HS2 powers under Schedule 17 of the HS2 Act 2017 
  • the Cranford Inquiry at Heathrow, an inquiry into proposed runway alterations, involving noise and air quality effects following the Government's decision to end the Cranford Agreement
  • the Stansted Airport expansion proposal, advising Legal and General in relation to landholdings and objections to the proposed expansion of the airport
  • the Kent International Gateway, an inquiry into a large rail connected logistics proposal on behalf of Kent County Council
  • new settlements and urban extensions with associated transport infrastructure proposals on behalf of developers
  • Alconbury Airfield, an inquiry into a large rail connected logistics proposal, on behalf of the developer
  • the Abberton Scheme, an inquiry into a large scale water transfer and storage scheme on behalf of the water company
  • the Terminal 5 inquiry, an inquiry into proposed airport expansion at Heathrow, on behalf of 10 local authorities, including rail and road connections
  • an inquiry under the Electricity legislation relating to the retention of pylons (via wayleave renewals) across London docklands on behalf of the London Docklands Development Corporation
  • the East London River Crossing proposal on behalf of the London Docklands Development Corporation
  • CPO inquiries into road proposals in London Docklands on behalf of the London Docklands Development Corporation

Craig's is often involved in cases where environmental issues are at large. 
His court work in relation to this area of law is also noted under Public Law.

His previous work includes:

  • the Cranford Inquiry at Heathrow, an inquiry into proposed runway alterations, involving noise and air quality effects following the Government's decision to end the Cranford Agreement
  • Advice in relation to Natural England’s Advice on nutrient neutrality and European protected sites
  • the M4 J3-5 "smart" Motorway Proposals on behalf of Hillingdon BC involving issues of air quality
  • Advising the Mayor of London on aviation strategy and potential impacts on European protected sites in the Thames Estuary
  • Warton Airfield BAE Systems, public inquiry and litigation relating to proposals under the Habitats and Wild Bird Directives and the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 for the culling of birds on an SPA/SSSI/RAMSAR site, on behalf of BAE Systems ([2014] EWHC 1645 (Admin) and [2015] EWCA Civ 227
  • Eaton v Natural England [2012] EWHC 2401 (Admin) and [2013] EWCA Civ 628 on the scope of enforcement and licensing obligations in the context of the Habitats and Birds Directives, representing the wind farm operator in the High Court and the Court of Appeal
  • Salmesbury Airfield, advice relating to the designation of a Biological Heritage Site
  • a High Court challenge to a decision to refuse planning permission for licensed drilling of boreholes for Coal Bed Methane
  • R (on the application of Bleaklow Industries Ltd) v SoS CLG [2008] EWHC 606, an appeal under Section 289 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 relating to mining activities in the Peak District National Park, in the High Court and the Court of Appeal [2009] 2 P&CR 21
  • R (on the application of Hart District Council) v SoS CLG and others [2008] EWHC 1204 (Admin), relating to the interpretation of the Habitats Regulations, on behalf of an interested party, in the High Court
  • R v. Environment Agency ex parte Turnbull [2000] 8 Env LR 71,an application for judicial review, relating to waste management licensing and BSE, on behalf of the Government's Intervention Board, in the High Court
  • Customs and Excise Commissioners v East Midlands Aggregates Ltd, relating to Aggregates Levy and the Finance Act 2001, on behalf of the aggregates company, in the VAT and Duties Tribunal and the Chancery Division of the High Court [2004] STC 1582
  • an inquiry under the Electricity legislation relating to the retention of pylons (via wayleave renewals) across London docklands on behalf of the London Docklands Development Corporation
  • Longstone Edge, enforcement proceedings relating to open cast fluorspar mining activities in the Peak District National Park, on behalf of the mineral operator
  • Church Crookham, an inquiry into a large urban extension to Fleet in Hampshire involving issues as to effects on nearby SPA/SSSIs, on behalf of the developer
  • the Abberton Reservoir Scheme, an inquiry into a large scale water transfer and storage scheme involving RAMSAR/SPA issues on behalf of the water company
  • Mereham, an inquiry into a new settlement near Cambridge involving issues as to waterways, energy and utilities infrastructure, on behalf of the promoter

Craig's experience in this area is wide ranging. 

His court work in relation to this area of law is also noted under Public Law.

His experience as advocate in CPO inquiries and High Court litigation includes:

  • the Tunbridge Wells CPO, an inquiry into a town centre development scheme including new local government offices and a new theatre, on behalf of the acquiring authority
  • Moto Hospitality Ltd v. The Highways Agency, a claim under Section 10 of the Compulsory Purchase Act 1995 in the Lands Tribunal and the Court of Appeal, on behalf of Moto
  • the Abberton Reservoir Scheme, a compulsory purchase case under S155 of the Water Industries Act 1991 and the Acquisition of Land Act 1981, relating to a large scale water transfer and storage scheme, on behalf of the acquiring water company
  • the Stansted Airport expansion proposal, advising Legal and General in relation to landholdings and objections to the proposed expansion of the airport
  • Chieveley junction, a compulsory purchase inquiry in relation to proposals for widening the A34/M4 Junction
  • CPO inquiries in London Docklands relating to the acquisition of land and rights (in particular for new highways infrastructure) on behalf of the London Docklands Development Agency

He has advised numerous clients on land acquisition and compensation issues including:  

  • Claims for compensation due to the HS2 rail scheme
  • a compensation claim following a CPO for a new road proposal in Hereford, instructed by Burgess Salmon
  • following a compulsory purchase of land under a SRFI DCO 
  • compensation in relation to infrastructure required for the Olympics
  • compensation following redevelopment of the Arsenal stadium
  • depreciation of land affected by the compulsory purchase of highway land
  • compensation following a town centre CPO

He has also acted as appointed Mediator in compensation disputes and has written a number of articles on the role of ADR in compensation cases (ADR/mediation profile).
 

Reference should be made elsewhere in Craig’s profile for examples of his public law work in the areas of Planning, Major Infrastructure Projects, Environment and Compulsory Purchase and Compensation etc.

This section of Craig’s profile focuses on his experience in statutory appeal and judicial review court cases, including:

  • Applications to the High Court for an interim injunction under s187B TCPA 1990 to restrain the use of a hotel in Wisbech as a hostel for accommodating asylum seekers, on behalf of Fenland District Council.
  • In the High Court and Court of Appeal in relation to test case issues of HS2 powers and interpretation of Schedule 17 of the HS2 Act 2017 for Hillingdon BC ([2020] EWCA Civ 1005 and [2021 EWCA Civ 1501)
  • In the High Court in relation to a challenge to the Bromley Local Plan under s113 TCPA 1990 ([2019] EWHC 2366 (Admin))
  • In the High Court in relation to a challenge to a decision by the London Mayor relating to tall buildings in LB Hillingdon ([2021] EWHC 3387 (Admin))
  • In the High Court in relation to challenge to the Vale of White Horse Local Plan (relating to a Green Belt boundary dispute) ([2019] EWHC 3080 (Admin))
  • Warton Airfield BAE Systems, litigation relating to proposals under the Habitats and Wild Bird Directives the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 for the culling of birds on an SPA/SSSI/RAMSAR site, on behalf of BAE Systems in the High Court and Court of Appeal ([2014] EWHC 1645 (Admin) and [2015] EWCA Civ 227)
  • Lyndon Top Farm, an appeal under s288 TCPA 1990 relating to the commencement of development and the interpretation of reserved matters conditions, on behalf of the landowner 
  • Eaton v Natural England [2012] EWHC 2401 (Admin) and [2013] EWCA Civ 628 on the scope of enforcement and licensing obligations in the context of the Habitats and Birds Directives, representing the wind farm operator in the High Court and the Court of Appeal
  • JA Pye (Oxford) Homes Ltd v SSCLG (2010) relating to the quashing of parts of the South East Plan in the High Court
  • R (on the application of Bleaklow Industries Ltd) v SoS CLG [2008] EWHC 606, an appeal under Section 289 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 relating to mining activities in the Peak District National Park, in the High Court and the Court of Appeal [2009] 2 P&CR 21
  • R (on the application of Hart District Council v SSCLG [2008] EWHC 1204 (Admin) relating to the interpretation of the Habitats Regulations, on behalf of an interested party, in the High Court;
  • Moto Hospitality Ltd v. The Highways Agency, relating to a claim under s10 CPA 1965, in the Lands Tribunal [2006] RVR 280 (LT) and in the Court of Appeal [2007] EWCA Civ 764 (CA)
  • Customs and Excise Commissioners v East Midlands Aggregates Ltd [2004] STC 1582, relating to Aggregates Levy, building works and the Finance Act 2001, on behalf of the aggregates company, in the Chancery Division;
  • R (Adlard) v SSE and Fulham Stadium Limited [2002] EWHC Admin 7, relating to a challenge to a call-in decision, on behalf of the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham, in the High Court;
  • R (Alconbury Developments Ltd) v SSE [2001] 2 WLR 1389, relating to the planning process and Article 6 of the Convention on Human Rights, on behalf of the developers, in the Divisional Court and the House of Lords;
  • R v Bristol City Council ex parte Anderson [2000] 79 P&CR 358, relating to planning conditions, on behalf of the developer, in the Court of Appeal 
  • R v Environment Agency ex parte Turnbull [2000] 8 Env.LR 715 relating to waste management licensing and BSE, on behalf of the Government's Intervention Board, in the High Court

Craig is also a CEDR Accredited Mediator and a RICS Accredited Evaluative Mediator, a member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and a member of the RICS President’s Mediation Panel. He was also appointed to serve on the first DCLG's Planning Mediation Services Panel. (See his separate ADR profile).

Craig has experience of a number of significant highways projects, including advice on and/or representation at s.78 appeal/TWA Order/CPO inquiries.

His previous work in this sector includes:

  • A two week s78 appeal inquiry into a large urban extension to Milton Keynes where the sole issue related to highways capacity/safety
  • Moto Hospitality Ltd v. The Highways Agency, a claim under Section 10 of the Compulsory Purchase Act 1995 in the Lands Tribunal and the Court of Appeal (for Moto)
  • the Chieveley junction, a CPO inquiry in relation to proposals for widening the A34/M4 Junction (for Chieveley Parish Council)
  • motorway and road infrastructure related to the Heathrow Terminal 5 proposal for the local authorities
  • the East London River Crossing (for the London Docklands Development Corporation)
  • CPO inquiries into roads in London docklands (eg the Lower Lea Crossing, the Poplar Link) (for the LDDC)

Qualifications and Appointments:

  • BA (Hons), Leeds University
  • Diploma in Law (University of Westminster)
  • Band Award from Grays Inn
  • Called to the Bar (1983 Grays Inn)
  • Junior Counsel to the Crown B Panel (1993-1999)
  • Appointed Queen's Counsel (2009)
  • Chairman of the London Luton Airport Consultative Committee (S35 CAA 1982) (1999-2002)
  • CEDR Accredited Mediator (2005)
  • Trustee of Planning Aid for London (Registered Charity) (2007-2012)
  • Lead Assistant Commissioner to the Boundary Commission for England (2012-2013)
  • The DCLG's Planning Mediation Services Panel (2012-2015)
  • RICS President's Mediation Panel (2010-)
  • Member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (2012-)
  • RICS Accredited Evaluative Mediator (2017)
  • Panel of approved counsel for the National Procurement Service for Wales (2017)
  • Vice Chair of the Lord Edmund-Davies Legal Education Trust 2009 -

Professional Affiliations:

  • Planning and Environment Bar Association (1990-) (Secretary 1994-1996)
  • Parliamentary Bar Mess (1990-)
  • United Kingdom Environmental Law Association (2009-)
  • National Planning Infrastructure Association (2012-)
  • Compulsory Purchase Association (2012-)
  • Civil Mediation Council (2009-14)
  • RICS General Mediation Panel (2010-)
  • Steering Group assisting Leonora Rozee in her report Planning in Mediation (2010) and in the Delivery of Recommendations Group (2011-12)
  • Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (2012-)
     

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Latest from Craig
23
Oct' 23
The Now Building, Tottenham Court Road

The Now Building in Tottenham Court Road is part of the Outernet entertainment district and a significant development in Central London. It is a unique space for the exhibition of digital artwork with four storey 360 degree screens and 4D and interactive capabilities

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03
Oct' 23
Guy Roots KC, Craig Howell Williams KC and Meyric Lewis KC Appointed to the RICS Panel of Dispute Resolvers for Compulsory Purchase Disputes

The Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) for Compulsory Purchase Disputes is a new RICS service. It is designed to help resolve the full ambit of disputes that can arise between acquiring authorities and land/property owners. 

Read more
24
Aug' 23
The ULEZ Decision

Following a two-day hearing on 4-5 July, Mr Justice Swift has given his judgment on the ULEZ High Court action at R (on the application of Hillingdon LBC et al) v Mayor of London [2023] EWHC 1972 (Admin).

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12
Jul' 23
Legal Challenge to ULEZ Expansion Heard in the High Court

During a two-day hearing last week (4-5 July 2023), the High Court (Mr Justice Swift) heard oral arguments on the legal challenge to the Mayor of London’s decision to expand the Ultra Low Emission Zone.

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