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The Supreme Court held (dismissing appeals by a local authority and a developer) that, when reasons for a decision are required, their adequacy is to be determined in the case of committees of elected members of a local authority by the same standard as is applicable to others (such as the Secretary of State). The reasons to be provided should not leave room for genuine doubt as to what has been decided and why, dealing with the main issues. It also held that the common law may impose a duty on such a committee to give reasons for the grant of planning permission for a development which is contrary to policy and against the advice of their own officers. John Howell QC represented CPRE (Kent) which successfully impuged the grant of planning permission for a major development proposed in an area of outstanding natural beauty.

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