Sarah Reid

Planning & Environment


36 Young Street, Manchester, M3 3FT
DX: 718188 MCH 3
Direct Dial: 0161 832 9082


5 Park Square, Leeds, LS1 2NE
Direct Dial: 0113 242 1123


Embassy House, 60 Church Street,
Birmingham, B3 2DJ
Direct Dial: 0121 200 3570

Clerked by:
William Brown
Gary Smith
Mark Ronson

Planning & Environment


Representing Gladman Developments Ltd in respect of numerous housing appeals for schemes on greenfield sites in sensitive areas, including:

  • Successfully obtaining consent for 95 units on land at Tutshill, Forest of Dean, and successfully challenging the Council’s OAN and 5 year supply;
  • Successfully challenging the Council’s OAN and 5 year supply, and obtaining a costs award against Forest of Dean Council, in an appeal relating to Land at Huntley, Forest of Dean;
  • Obtaining planning permission in a recovered inquiry for a scheme for 180 units on land at Coleford, Gloucestershire;
  • Obtaining planning permission for 150 units on land at Grimsargh, Preston, and successfully challenging the Council’s 5 year supply notwithstanding the very recent adoption of Preston’s Local Plan;
  • Representing Gladman Developments Ltd on a number of other matters, including a scheme for 80 units at Tysoe, Stratford upon Avon, and a scheme for 110 units at Bicknacre, Essex.

Successfully obtaining consent on behalf of Hollins Strategic Land for up to 50 dwellings on greenfleid land in a proposed area of separation in Fylde. On the first day of the appeal, Sarah negotiated a concession from the Council that they did not have a five - year supply of housing land, contrary to the assertions made in their evidence.

Successfully obtaining planning permission on behalf of Metacre Ltd in a scheme for the erection of 93 dwellings and D1 space on land at Great Eccleston, Lancashire. Sarah also successfully argued that a significant transport contribution requested by the LPA and Highways Authority was not CIL compliant and should not be paid.

Successfully obtaining consent as Junior Counsel on behalf of Manor Oak Homes for up to 95 units in Steeple Claydon, Buckinghamshire.

Representing Catesby Estates Ltd as Junior Counsel in a planning inquiry and subsequent High Court challenge for up to 170 dwellings on land at Countesthorpe, Leicestershire.

Successfully representing Harrogate Borough Council in resisting an appeal against the Council’s refusal to grant consent for up to 165 houses. The Inspector agreed that the scheme would cause “serious” and “acute” harm to landscape character and conservation interests that would “fundamentally undermine the intentions of local and national policy concerning landscape protection”.

Resisting a S288 High Court challenge on behalf of Harrogate Borough Council. Sarah successfully argued before the High Court that paragraph 109 of the NPPF (Valued Landscape) was a specific policy of restriction within the meaning of Footnote 9, and that where there was conflict with this policy, the presumption in favour of sustainable development in paragraph 14 was disapplied.

Acted on behalf of Spitfire Properties LLP as junior Counsel in resisting a Section 288 challenge in respect of a grant of consent on land at Snitterfield, Stratford on Avon.


Specialist Housing for Older People

Advising and representing McCarthy and Stone in respect of numerous sites throughout England and Scotland, and appearing on their behalf at various appeals (including sites at Wokingham, Frome and Grantham). Sarah is one of a select panel of barristers regularly instructed by McCarthy and Stone.

Successfully representing Blue Cedar Homes in respect of a scheme for specialist accommodation for the elderly in Kingston Bagpuize, and successfully arguing that no affordable housing contribution should be made on the basis of scheme viability.

Successfully representing Kirklees Council in a called in inquiry for a retirement village in the Green Belt.


Heritage / Conservation

Successfully representing Shropshire Council in their opposition to the demolition of “The Stew”, an unlisted building in a Conservation Area dating from the 1700s.

Representing North Yorkshire County Council in their opposition to a scheme involving arguments on Enabling Development and the impact of Minerals Development on a group of significant heritage assets.

Representing West Lancashire District Council in an inquiry into Enabling Development to restore the first Roman Catholic Seminary built in England since the Reformation.

Numerous housing appeals involving impact on heritage assets (for example, Tutshill, Tysoe, Harrogate above).


Local Plans

Representing Cheshire West and Chester Council in the Examination Hearings into their Local Plan (Part One) Strategic Policies (Junior Counsel to Stephen Sauvain QC).

Representing Durham Council in the Examination Hearings into the County Durham Plan (Strategic Policies).

Successfully advising Gladman Developments Ltd on representations submitted in respect of a Neighbourhood Plan at Sandbach, Cheshire.

Advising various third parties (including developers and Parish Councils) in respect of their objections to emerging Local Plans.


Compulsory Purchase

Representing Blackpool Council in a Compulsory Purchase Order Inquiry to acquire land for the comprehensive redevelopment of the Tyldesley Road area of Blackpool.

Successfully representing the lead objector in a Compulsory Purchase Order inquiry relating to the acquisition of land for the comprehensive regeneration of the Benwell Scotswood area of Newcastle.

Advising Stockport Council in the Travis Brow CPO (Highways).

Representing Burnley Council in a Housing Act CPO.


Energy and Waste

Successfully representing Salford City Council in their opposition to a waste treatment and recovery scheme (including MRF, AD and gassification facilities) at Green Lane, Salford (Junior Counsel to David Manley QC).

Promoting a large wind farm in a sensitive part of Oxfordshire (Fewcott, Oxfordshire) (Junior Counsel to Paul Tucker QC).



Advising IOME/Shoprite in their claim that the planning decision of the Department of the Environment, Food and Agriculture (IOM) was procedurally unfair, and failed to take into account considerations material to retail policy.

Successfully representing the lead objector in a called in inquiry into a scheme for the comprehensive regeneration of the New Brighton waterfront, Wirral.

Representing Stoke On Trent City Council in a called in inquiry for a new Wedgwood Hotel, Stoke on Trent.


"She is one of the most thorough lawyers that I have ever come across. She is extremely good on matters of detail and fact, very insightful when it comes to the law and someone who manages to put the most complex of matters in ways that clients understand."

Chambers UK


Sarah practices in all areas of Town and Country Planning. She regularly appears for developer, local authority and private clients in Planning Inquiries and Hearings, Enforcement Inquiries, Compulsory Purchase Inquiries, Planning Prosecutions and Development Plan Examination Hearings.

Sarah has extensive experience across the full range of planning matters including housing applications, employment land applications, renewable energy applications, applications concerning heritage assets, advertising and enforcement matters and compulsory purchase.

Sarah regularly advises and appears in statutory challenges and Judicial Review proceedings, and has appeared in both the High Court and Court of Appeal.

Sarah practices in the field of Highways Law, including advisory work and appearances at Public Path and Definitive Map Modification Order Inquiries. She is the Assistant Editor of the Encyclopedia of Highway Law and Practice.

Sarah is instructed by the Government Legal Department as Junior Counsel to the Crown (A Panel).

Sarah also appears in licensing appeals, with particular experience in appeals relating to premises licenses.

Year of Call: 2004


Areas of Expertise

Planning and Environmental Bar Association, National Committee Member

Northern and North Eastern Circuit

Committee Member for Women in Planning North West



Junior Counsel to the Crown (Provincial Panel)

Assistant Editor of the Encyclopedia of Highway Law and Practice

Member of the Bar Council's Education and Training Committee



LLB Law with Hispanic Law (First Class), University College London.

Hurst Prize, Andrews Prize, Simmonds prize, UCL Dean's List (University College London).

Diploma in Spanish Law, La Universidad de Carlos III, Madrid.

BVC (Outstanding - ranked 1st in the year), College of Law, London.

Lord Denning Scholarship, Megarry Scholarship, Buchanan Prize (Lincoln’s Inn).

University Tutor, Property I, University College London 2003 – 2004.



Chambers UK 2019

"Very approachable and confident in her approach to cases." "Very sharp.  Her cross-examinations are good."

Legal 500 2019

"She leaves no stone unturned in a case."

The Planner, Women of Influence 2019

"Sarah is an extremely professional and experienced planning barrister who has been beyond helpful at planning inquiries. Her friendly manner has built my confidence and influenced my experience of inquiries and giving professional evidence."

"Outstanding advice to my local authority in support of the preparation of our local plan. She has been able to articilate the new policy requirements of NPPF/ NPPG in a practical and clear way – not only to my team but to our specialist consultants. Easily one of the best barristers I have worked with in my 20 years as a planner."

"Sarah is one of only three female planning barristers at Kings Chambers. As well as being a national committee member of the Planning and Environmental Law Association, she has been an active member of Women in Planning North West since its inception. Sarah organised inquiry training for Women in Planning event in October 2018, which gave a number of women valuable experience in how to give evidence in inquiry conditions. At least one of these participants has now been asked to give expert witness in a major inquiry, which may not have been possible without Sarah's training and encouragement from. She is always positive and encouraging, and will always take time to be supportive and provide assistance. She is also keen to increase the presence of women at the bar, who at the moment are vastly underrepresented."

Legal 500 2018

"A formidable advocate."

Chambers UK 2018

"Maintains a wide ranging planning practice…she is particularly well versed in planning matters pertaining to residential and retail developments".

"Hard working and very keen to make sure she has fully understood the case and is mapping a way to the best result".

"Very thorough and diligent. She is also very approachable and very hands on".

The Planner

Women of Influence list, 2018

Planning Magazine

Top Rated Junior List, 2018

Chambers UK 2017

"She is one of the most thorough lawyers that I have ever come across. She is extremely good on matters of detail and fact, very insightful when it comes to the law and someone who manages to put the most complex of matters in ways that clients understand."

"She shows a very great attention to detail and is very, very focused”.

 “She is very good at motivating and is a good leader of a team." 

"Attracts plentiful praise".

"She is noted for her expert strategy and effective advocacy style".

Chambers UK 2016

"She is extremely dedicated and motivated, and meticulous in how she goes about things."

"I would pick her out: she is very effective."





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