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Vincent Fraser QC
Year of Call: 1981
Year of Silk: 2001
Vincent is a leading practitioner in all aspects of town and country planning law advising regularly on development proposals and challenges, and appearing at public inquiries and judicial challenges.
Vincent has extensive experience of renewable energy projects having advised on and successfully promoted a number of wind farm proposals including Tween Bridge (Doncaster), Green Rigg (Tynedale), Wandylaw (Berwick), Nutsgrove (Peterborough) and Out Newton (Holderness). The proposals have involved detailed consideration of a multiplicity of issues including energy policy, landscape and visual impacts, environmental assessment, impacts upon nature conservation interests (including implications for European law), radar, aviation interests, air defence and military training, cultural heritage, archaeology, underground mining, drainage, and noise.
Vincent appeared at the Manchester Airport Second Runway inquiry. He has advised on and appeared at a number of inquiries addressing issues affecting airports including, impacts upon airport radar and operations, noise related impacts and airport parking.
Vincent regularly advises on and appears at inquiries involving major commercial and mixed use developments: examples include promoting a major mixed use redevelopment of Warrington town centre, proposals for the redevelopment of New Brighton, a major mixed use development including a new rugby league stadium for Salford City Reds, proposals for mixed use development centred around a new racecourse in Salford, the largest glass manufacturing plant in Europe in Ince/Elton, major mixed use redevelopment of a town centre site in Beverley close to the Minster, motorway service areas in various locations, oil and gas terminal in Flintshire, Birch Coppice Distribution Centre.
Commons and Village Greens
Vincent has advised on and appeared at inquiries into commons and village greens both successfully promoting and resisting registration; examples include Hogshaw Wood in Buxton.
Compulsory Purchase and Land Compensation Issues
Vincent has substantial experience advising on compulsory purchase orders and appearing at inquiries into orders; examples include promoting Meden Valley compulsory purchase orders on behalf of English Partnerships which considered issues of regeneration and housing, resisting orders for acquisition of Huncoat Power Station which involved considerations of compulsory purchase order powers and procedures and waste disposal needs and strategy in Lancashire, various highway and housing compulsory purchase orders.
Vincent regularly advises upon land compensation issues and appears at Lands Tribunal and arbitration hearings with respect to such issues. Examples include compensation following town centre redevelopment in Liverpool, compensation following acquisition for new roads, and compensation following redevelopment of residential areas. He has advised on and appeared in cases assessing compensation for provisions of utilities and compensation under the Land Compensation Act 1973 consequent on the provision of public works.
Vincent has extensive experience advising upon and appearing in enforcement cases; examples include local authorities' powers and duties following major development in the absence of planning permission and prior environmental impact assessment, and enforcement following unauthorised waste disposal.
Highways, Footpaths & Right of Way
Vincent regularly advises on and appears in cases involving highways and rights of way including litigation and footpath and rights of way inquiries. He has appeared in cases addressing the existence, extent and status of highways. He has regularly appeared in court and at inquiries addressing stopping up and diversion of highways. He has advised on and promoted traffic regulation orders at inquiry. He has appeared in arbitration addressing utilities in the highway.
Vincent has extensive experience promoting and resisting major residential development addressing a wide range of issues including affordable housing, housing land requirements, and design, both in the context of residential development alone and as part of major mixed use schemes.
Vincent has extensive experience advising on and appearing in inquiries into infrastructure proposals including, energy projects, roads and bridges, motorway service areas and utilities.
Judicial review and Statutory Challenges
Vincent regularly advises on and appears in Administrative Court proceedings. Please see examples in the significant cases section below.
Vincent regularly advises and appears on mining proposals and mining related matters including open cast and deep mining and old mining permissions.
Vincent has extensive experience advising and appearing on retail matters for retailers and local planning authorities. Examples include various Wm Morrison and ASDA superstores, town centre redevelopments in Huddersfield, Warrington, factory outlet centre (Kendal), and proposals where retail development has been advanced as enabling development.
Vincent has extensive experience on a range of waste issues including landfill, bio-remediation, energy from waste, composting, sewage treatment. Examples include successfully promoting a new landfill site near Mold in Flint, successfully resisting a clinical waste treatment facility in Warrington, appearing in inquiry into a modification order addressing the impact of SAC on a permitted landfill site, appearing on behalf of local planning authority in respect of time extension for landfill in St Helens, resisting compulsory purchase order to provide waste technology park in Accrington.
Ardagh Glass v Chester City Council  EWCA Civ 172,  EWHC 745 (Admin)  Env. L. R. 34 - Planning, local government, environment - environmental impact assessment, industrial development, retrospective permission, unauthorised development, enforcement, planning permission, local authorities.
Barratt Development Plc v Wakefield MDC  EWHC 3208 - planning, housing, local government - affordable housing, PPS 3, core strategy, planning policy, regional spatial strategies
Crowley v Liverpool PSDA Ltd  RVR 125 - compensation, compulsory purchase, extinguishment, mitigation, retailers, storage.
Wirral BC v Brock Plc  EWCA Civ 1611  Env. L. R. 26  2 P&CR 18 - Planning, mining, enforcement - EC Law, direct effect, directives, environmental impact assessment, extension of time, minerals, planning conditions, quarries, decisions.
Younger Homes (Northern) Ltd v First Secretary of State  EWCA Civ  Env. L. R. 12  1 P&CR 14 - Planning, environment, local government - Environmental impact assessment, planning permission, screening opinions, regulations, delegated authority, prejudice.
R(Eastleigh BC) v First Secretary of State  EWHC 1408 (Admin)  24 E.G. 149 (CS) - Use classes, lawful development certificate, planning control, supermarkets.
R(Bennett Fergusson Coal Ltd) v First Secretary of State  EWHC 1858 (Admin)  1 P&CR 30 - Planning - change of use, coal, industrial processes, lawful development certificates, recycling, use classes order.
Hussain v Bradford City Council  RVR 140 - Planning, compulsory purchase, compensation, commercial property, repairs, valuation.
Morris Homes Ltd v South Ribble BC  JPL 614 - local plans, structure plans, housing.
Powergen UK Plc v Leicester City Council (2001) 81 P&CR 5 - Variation of conditions, time limits, reserved matters, estoppel.
Enterprise Inns Plc v SOSETR (2001) 81 P&CR 18 - Compulsory purchase, limitation, time for challenge, delay, local authorities powers and duties, conservation areas.
Bhattacharjee v Blackburn with Darwen BC  RVR 55 - Compulsory purchase, compensation, limitation, waiver.
Alnwick DC v SOSETR (2000) 79 P&CR 130 - Revocation of planning permission, statutory powers, relevance of compensation and financial issues, amendments.
Chambers UK 2013:
Solicitors say Vincent Fraser QC "is a formidable advocate" who is "intellectually and academically very, very good." Adept at taking on all manner of planning cases, he is particularly known for appearing for and advising retailers, local authorities, housebuilders, wind farm developers and leading energy companies. Of late, he has been appearing for Morrisons at an inquiry into a supermarket proposal in Wells. Vincent Fraser QC proves particularly active in wind farm cases. Recent representative work for him includes successfully acting for Cornwall Light & Power in relation to a challenge brought by Hargreaves to consent given for the construction of a wind farm. He also appeared in the Frodsham wind farm inquiry acting on behalf of Peel Energy.
Vincent Fraser QC is an experienced practitioner with expertise in planning and local government law. He recently represented an authority during the consultation process for changing electoral boundaries.
Chambers UK 2012:
Vincent Fraser QC has acted in a variety of environment cases in the past year, including for a landowner in a dispute over the interpretation of the Waste and Landfill Directives.
His broad expertise covers local government finance and administration, registration of common land, parking issues and judicial review. He recently advised Kirklees Metropolitan Borough Council on the restructuring of its legal services and its relevant powers, and successfully represented Wakefield District Council planning authority in a judicial review challenge to a grant of planning permission.
Vincent Fraser QC is felt to "quickly get to the heart of the matter." He has a depth of experience in public inquiries and judicial challenges where he focuses on retail, residential and commercial developments, renewable energy, waste projects and compulsory purchase orders.
Chambers UK 2010:
Vincent Fraser QC takes on a wide range of local government matters including finance and administration, but is best known for his planning prowess "an incredibly good advocate and one of the most tenacious cross-examiners out there".
His knowledgeable and intelligent approach to cases makes him a solid choice for difficult or complex cases.
He is an admired expert in town and country planning. He has gained a robust reputation for environmental impact work, recently advising on a large wind farm development near Doncaster.
Chambers UK 2009:
Vincent Fraser QC handles top-end work, from town and country planning, CPO and compensation to education and local government finance and administration.
Vincent Fraser QC remains "the go-to man for wind farm enquiries" and recently advised EON UK Renewables during proceedings concerning the Humberhead proposals.
Chambers UK 2008:
Vincent Fraser is "one of the cleverest advocates in the North West and has a good grasp of the issues and an amazing capacity for the finer points of legal interpretation." With a "Gordon Brown style of advocacy," he has expertise in a variety of planning matters including CPOs and highways.
Chambers Guide 2007:
'"A formidable advocate" Vincent Fraser QC is "excellence personified". Vastly experienced in the inquiry context, he acts both for those promoting or objecting to large retail, housing energy and leisure schemes. CPO and highways inquiries also keep him busy.'
'Known for his pure local government practice, he is heavily involved in town centre redevelopment as well as town and country planning.'
Chambers Guide 2006:
"Kings Chambers - ....this nationally reputed set was lauded as one of the dominant planning chambers....its members were further praised for the impressive scope of work undertaken and "quality results produced" which ensures that "you are never disappointed". "Shrewd" Vincent Fraser QC "excels in the art of negotiation" and has a "high calibre" national practice. His expertise was rated as "second to none" and he continues to act in high-profile local planning inquiries."
Vincent is included amongst the top planning Barristers as chosen by leading planning lawyers and consultants in England and Wales.
Planning and Environmental Bar Association
Administrative Law Bar Association
UK Environmental Law Association
Northern and North Eastern Circuit
Career & Education
Oxford (University College)
Year of Call:
1981 Gray's Inn
Holker Entrance Award
Deputy High Court Judge (Admin Court) 2010