When is a Public Need Not a Public Need?

The High Court recently had to deal with the question ‘What constitutes a public need?’ when it faced a planning appeal against an application for the creation of a very ‘upscale’ golf club and spa resort, which was to be built on Green Belt land.

Whilst the developer had made a good case that there was demand for the planned facilities and that the resort would be a commercial success, mere demand, ruled the Court, is not sufficient to equate to a public need.

In such circumstances, ‘need’, the Court decided, means a need that is in the interests of the public and the community as a whole.

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