Bringing you thought provoking opinion articles from our experts and the recent news from within our Planning & Development division.


It was clear that 3D visualisation had taken hold of the UK planning system when a policy in the draftnew London Plan encouraged the use of digital modelling ‘as part of the plan-making process to assess growth options and forms of development’. It also suggests that the Mayor, working with the boroughs, should use 3D virtual reality digital modelling to help identify tall building locations in London.  

This article was first published in Planning & Development Insite, click here to read the full article.

Carter Jonas in the news

Our experts have recently secured planning permission, on behalf of Buccleuch Property, for the redevelopment of an existing industrial site on Nestles Avenue, Hayes, West London, in the London Borough of Hillingdon, immediately adjacent to the new Crossrail station at Hayes & Harlington.

The existing site, comprising of a series of low-rise warehouse buildings, associated sheds and ancillary development, will be replaced with a new residential led mixed-use scheme, comprising of 457 new homes, of which 30% are affordable. The site will also feature flexible B1 workspace, retail and café uses, alongside amenity areas and car parking.

The site falls within the GLA’s Hayes Housing Zone and Heathrow Opportunity Area, with the region north of Nestles Avenue extending to around 40 acres earmarked for redevelopment to form a new mixed-use neighbourhood.  This involved working with neighbouring landowners as part of a comprehensive masterplan for the development of the new neighbourhood and engagement with a wide range of stakeholders, including Barratt London, SEGRO, Network Rail, TfL, Access Self Storage and the GLA. Barratt London and SEGRO’s scheme for the redevelopment of the former Nestles Avenue factory site further down the road was approved in December 2017 and is under construction.

Carter Jonas was initially responsible for promoting the site through the Local Plan and then later became responsible for leading the client and design team through the pre-application process, ultimately guiding the submission of a full planning application in April 2018. Our services included planning, development agency and consultancy, including viability advice.  

For further information, please contact a member of our team:

Nick Taylor
Partner, Planning & Development 
020 7016 0733

Carter Jonas were recently successful in gaining planning permission for the demolition of a traditional detached house on Woodstock Road, Oxford. Its replacement will be an overtly contemporary residential apartment building, which is locally contentious in its design.

Our experts began the overall process towards eventual permission by going through a careful pre-application process with the Council which involved an initial discussion on how they saw the local built context and how best to respond to it, both in terms of the site itself and the wider relationship to the neighbouring properties. The approach was to promote an overall design style that was plainly different to what existed currently and was unashamedly modern in its appearance, whilst looking to respect the form of the surrounding housing by echoing some of the main built themes. These themes included a palette of materials and styles, including brick, stone and timber and a recessed roof level. 

Aside from the aesthetic, there were concerns around providing a more efficient use for the site, in proposing a net gain of six residential buildings out of the available site in a three-storey building. This included creating three x 2-bed, two x 3-bed and two x 1-bed flats, with the provision of private amenity space, car parking, bin and cycle storage. With new housing in dwindling in supply in this area and land a finite resource, Oxford being constrained by surrounding Green Belt land and large areas of flood plain, the local authority was welcoming of the principle of additional residential development.

The process of constant dialogue was maintained through from the initial pre-application stage and on through the formal planning application stage, to the point where the planning officers were content to recommend the application for permission to the planning committee. 

However, the process was not completely straightforward and was taken to planning committee due to resistance from residents and amenity groups, principally on design grounds. 

Members of the committee resolved to approve the application on the basis that they accepted the design merits of the proposal. 

For further information, please contact a member of our team:


Huw Mellor
Partner, Planning & Development
01865 255166

Our northern development team has agreed to sell a residential development site at Aldborough Gate, Boroughbridge. 

Acting on behalf of the landowner, our team initially agreed terms for an Option Agreement in 2015 with national house builder, Taylor Wimpey. Taylor Wimpey have been pursuing full planning permission for 184 units on the site which was granted in 2019. The development team then successfully negotiated the sale price following receipt of planning permission and Taylor Wimpey have now commenced construction. The site is located to the southern end of Boroughbridge, benefitting from good transport links with Junction 48 of the A1M only 0.5 miles away, providing easy access to Harrogate, York and Leeds.

For further information, please contact a member of our team:

John Webster 
Partner, Planning & Development
0113 203 1063

Our experts were instructed in the spring 2019 by De Bene Esse and the Abbey Group, promoters for a residential development opportunity on behalf of a consortium of landowners.

The site extended to approximately 4.6 hectares. To the rear of the property residents will benefit from the view of open fields.

An outline planning consent was secured in May 2018 for up to 45 dwellings, including a 40% affordable housing allocation. A full national marketing campaign was undertaken, and serious interest was received from a wide range of companies including housebuilding plc’s, regional developers, local developers and affordable housing providers.

Bids were invited by informal tender and 12 bids were received; the vast majority exceeded the guide price of offers in excess of £2,500,000. Parties had been invited to offer a planning overage on the basis that the number of consented units was low for the site area. 

Three of the developers were invited to post bid interviews. Cross Keys Homes, who was the highest bidder, decided to submit their offer to take account of potential planning gain and therefore were not offering overage. Terms were successfully agreed with Cross Keys Homes in the summer 2019, with the agreed price of £3,686,463.

There were a number of legal and technical issues that needed to be resolved and Carter Jonas acted collaboratively with the purchaser, promoters and solicitors throughout the post tender process to find satisfactory conclusions. Simultaneous exchange and completion took place in January 2020.

Mark Hanson, director of development at Cross Key Homes, outlines how Carter Jonas dealt with the complex matters involved in the project:

“We found the process of acquiring this site to be more complex than many other sites, however the process was greatly facilitated by the helpful and transparent style of the seller’s agents, Carter Jonas. There were one or two sticky patches, but the positivity and professionalism of the Cambridge team got us through them.”

For further information, please contact a member of our team:

Nick Muncey
Partner, Planning & Development
01223 326817

The next edition of Planning & Development bulletin will be published in March, however you can keep up-to-date with our latest firmwide developments on the News & Events of our website.

@ James Bainbridge
James Bainbridge
01865 404437 email me about James
@ Nick Taylor
Nick Taylor 
Partner - Head of Planning
020 7016 0733 email me about Nick Taylor
@ Colin Brown
Colin Brown
Partner - Head of Planning and Development Division
01223 326826 email me about Colin
@ Steven Sensecall
Steven Sensecall
Partner - Head of Planning in the Southern Region
01865 297705 email me about Steven
@ John Webster
John Webster
Partner - Head of Planning and Development North
0113 203 1063 email me about John

James is Chairman of Carter Jonas.  Formerly Head of the Planning & Development Division, James advises clients on proposed development projects throughout the south of England with nearly 30 years of experience in residential and mixed use development.  This includes site identification, project management of planning and development strategies, valuation and viability appraisals, marketing and sale of development opportunities. He has specific expertise in option, promotion and other development agreements, joint ventures and landowner equalisation agreements. James has been involved in sites ranging from new settlements to city centre regeneration and smaller provincial and rural schemes, and also provides expert witness and independent expert valuation services for dispute resolution.

I can provide advice on:

Nick is a chartered town planner and development surveyor with over 25 years' experience, gained across the residential, commercial, retail and industrial sectors for corporate, institutional and private landowners and developers. He has worked at CBRE and Drivers Jonas Deloitte. His professional experience is in three main sectors – Strategic Land / Projects, Retail / Mixed-Use and Central London. Strategic Projects / Land involves the promotion of land for commercial and residential development for landowners and developers. Retail / Mixed-Use schemes are a blend of edge of centre and town centre mixed-use schemes with food stores and other uses, often residential. This sector includes regeneration and waterside schemes. Central London focuses on projects from Canary Wharf to Hammersmith and Camden down to Wandsworth, Southwark and Lambeth.

When he isn’t working, Nick can be found playing golf (increasingly badly) and spending time re-stocking and emptying his wine cellar to indulge his passion for wine.

Colin is a Partner and was appointed Head of Planning & Development Division in November 2020, he is based out of our Cambridge office.  He has over 25 years’ experience of planning consultancy and has a broad sphere of work.  He acts for a wide range of private, institutional and developer clients and has worked on significant planning applications and appeals.

He regularly instructs Counsel, and has appeared at a number of Local Plan examinations and in Section 78 and other appeals where he has often given evidence.  He carries out much land promotion work and has a strong track record of delivering planning consents taking projects through their entire process from site identification to construction on site.  

Away from work, Colin is Chairman of the Cambridge Forum for the Construction Industry and of the Cambridge branch of networking group, Interact.  He is also Chairman of the Dining Rights Committee at the Hawks’ Club, a sporting club in the City for Cambridge University sportsmen. He is a regular, if poor golfer, a keen cyclist and a committed, but somewhat less dangerous skier than he once was.

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Steven is Partner and Head of Planning Southern Region and is based in our Oxford office.

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John is Head of the Leeds office and the Planning & Development Team North. John advises clients on proposed development projects throughout the North of England.  He has over 30 years’ experience in residential and commercial development acting for private, corporate, institutional, charity and public sector clients.

This includes site identification, project management of planning and development strategies, valuation and viability appraisals, marketing and sale of development opportunities.

John has specific expertise in Options, Promotional Agreements, Joint Ventures and Conditional Contracts, acting mainly for landowners.  John has been involved in projects such as new settlements, to city centre regeneration, provincial sites, large commercial developments and site sales.

The Development Agency team are currently instructed on 6,500 acres in 150 locations across the North West, Yorkshire and the North East.

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Planning Insite 2020
Planning & Development Insite | Winter | 2020
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