DC Casebook: Court Case - Appellants denied justice in design row

A Surrey couple have persuaded the High Court to overturn an inspector's decision to back Spelthorne Borough Council's objection to the retention of exterior brickwork used to build a new house.

The applicants had secured permission for the house in 2002 subject to a condition requiring that it be built using painted render or timber above plinth level. They proceeded to build it in brick. In 2006 they failed to convince an inspector and the High Court that the condition should be varied to allow the use of brick.

Following a further appeal, a second inspector decided last year that the condition was reasonable. However, deputy judge Stephen Stewart QC concluded that natural justice had been breached in determining the appeal, in that the appellants' agent had not been sent representations submitted by the council in the correct manner. He quashed the inspector's decision.

Fuller v Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government

Date: 31 October 2008

Ref: CO/258/2008.

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