Law firm Bond Dickinson has successfully advised client Gordon Brown on the challenge to the grant of planning permission by Carlisle City Council to Stobart Air Ltd.
The challenge was upheld by the High Court. Bond Dickinson’s planning lawyers Frank Orr and Antonia Murillo, based in Newcastle, acted for farmer Gordon Brown, instructing Gregory Jones QC and Jeremy Pike of Francis Taylor Buildings.
In February 2013 Carlisle City Council granted planning permission to Stobart Air Ltd for development at Carlisle Airport
The council argued that planning permission should be granted because the runway works would enable commercial flights to operate from the airport which was loss-making and thereby keep it open.
Brown argued that the financial assessment of viability and therefore the likelihood of the benefits arising had not been properly assessed.
In particular, it would be necessary for airlines using the airport to be subsidised and such subsidies had not been factored into the financial assessment.
The case is one of the first cases in which the relationship between state aid and the grant of planning permission has been considered.
On the present facts the Court considered that issues of state aid were not engaged.