Planning applications: Burridge v Breckland District Council

This case, in the Court of Appeal, considered the difficult but familiar point of whether a planning application, which itself proposes a ‘below the EIA threshold’ development, must be treated as part of a wider project. The case involved two separate but linked planning applications. The first — a biomass renewable energy plant — would provide gas, via an underground pipeline, to the second proposal — a CHP plant on a separate site. The two applications were ‘functionally interdependent’ — and both were on the table. The Court of Appeal quashed both permissions. The council should have treated them as a single project (‘one overall application’) for screening purposes, which would have meant the threshold would have been exceeded. The cases of Swale and Candlish were distinguished.

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