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Tennis Court Blocked on Countryside Protection Grounds

Tennis Court1In the week of the Wimbledon tennis finals, a homeowner has failed to convince the High Court that he was irrationally refused planning permission to lay down a hard-surfaced tennis court in his rural back garden.

In a decision which was later upheld by a planning inspector, the local authority had decided that the fenced tennis court would be detrimental to the character of the open countryside. In challenging the inspector’s ruling, the homeowner argued that the tennis court would be a sustainable development of the type encouraged by the Government’s National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).

However, in dismissing his arguments as ‘circular’, the Court found that the NPPF was not automatically applicable and that there was no ‘inconsistency of substance’ between it and local countryside protection policies.