Michael Rudd instructed by Kim Brown, Solicitor with Shropshire Council obtained an injunction to secure affordable housing provision on a housing development site in Hinstock, Shropshire.

Planning permission was granted in August 2015 for the residential development comprising 36 houses, with an affordable housing provision of 5 houses being secured by an s.106 Agreement. The landowner, Lansdowne Investment Partnership Limited, proceeded to develop the land and then commenced marketing for sale on the open market units intended as affordable housing. 

The local authority sought a without notice injunction against the landowner and marketing agent, Walmer Homes Northern Limited, to prevent the sale on the open market of the final two properties on the site, the authority being concerned that the landowners would attempt to sell those properties during the notice period. Pepperall J sitting in the High Court at the Birmingham District Registry refused the application, observing that such behaviour would not be usual. The application was renewed on a with-notice basis and during the four day notice period the landowners purported to have sold the two properties, precisely as feared by the authority.

The injunction application was amended to prevent both the occupation and/or sale of the two properties as anything other than affordable housing, and the order was sought against the landowners, marketing agent and in addition “persons unknown”, relying upon the powers available under both s.106(5) and s.187B of the 1990 Act. HHJ McKenna granted the order sought, checkmate for the authority!

This order represents yet a further success by Michael Rudd in obtaining injunctions against housebuilders and landowners to enforce obligations originally secured under s.106 of the 1990 Act, with the injunctive powers available to local planning authorities under both s.106(5) and s.187B of the 1990 Act proving to be very valuable tools in the armoury of any local planning authority faced with intransigent or prevaricating housing developers.

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