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James specialises in planning and development consenting, as well as environmental assessment and compulsory purchase and compensation issues, Planning Act development consent orders, Parliamentary, Transport and Works Act and highways matters. 

He has advised utility companies, developers, local authorities and other public bodies and has experience of the water & sewage, energy, airports, ports, rail, housing and retail sectors.

James has particular expertise in securing consents for and interfaces with major infrastructure projects.

James is an active member of the National Infrastructure Planning Association, and of the Compulsory Purchase Association.

Practices

Representative Experience

Energy

National Grid: North Wales connection project, Bramford-Twinstead connection project, South & East Anglia Link offshore project, Mid-Wales connection project – lead external legal adviser on the promotion of various new major high voltage powerlines connecting the existing Grid to new generation.  Advising on the associated promotion through the Planning Act 2008 Development Consent Order (‘DCO’) regime, as well as associated consents.  This includes advice on all aspects of the project including environmental impact assessment (EIA), Habitats Regulations, compulsory purchase, and associated advice on conventional Town and Country Planning Act consents.

National Grid: Snowdonia undergrounding project & Dinorwig asset replacement project - on the necessary consents for new underground high voltage power lines, including CPOs in each case.

National Grid: electricity lines, various sites - on the retention of existing powerlines and associated infrastructure.  Advice included consideration of compensation, associated negotiations and preparation for a statutory wayleave hearing, and dealing with the subsequent compensation claim in the Lands Chamber and then the Court of Appeal.

National Grid: interface with generation and other schemes, various sites - on the interface with other DCO promoters and generator interfaces in the DCO process.

C.GEN: gas fired power station – advising on proposals for a gas fired power station, following the DCO process, including associated conventional planning matters, and advice on the interface with other DCO projects. 

 

Water and waste water

Thames Water and Affinity water: new reservoir proposals and water transfer scheme – advising on major new water resource strategic resource option proposals, and the progression through policy & DCO process.

Thames Water & Bazelgette Tunnel: Thames Tideway Tunnel - on the promotion of the DCO for the £4.2 billion Thames Tideway Tunnel Project in London. 

Thames Water: various operational sites - (Beckton, Riverside, and Mogden Sewage Treatment Works) on the evolution and submission of conventional planning applications and environmental statements, providing continued advice in relation to the progression of the applications and associated negotiations regarding conditions and Section 106 obligations.

Southern Water: new wastewater treatment works - on the development of the £350 million Brighton & Hove Wastewater Treatment Project, for a new wastewater treatment works and associated linear transfer infrastructure.

 

Ports

C.RO Ports – advising on port expansion proposals to accommodate greater capacity.

Major port operator – advising on port (river Thames) rationalisation and expansion.

Major port operator – advising on major port expansion proposals in southern England, to accommodate greater capacity. Associated DCO promotion advice.

 

Transport

Heathrow Airport Limited: expansion proposals – on the promotion of the expansion proposals, including a new third runway.  Advising on all aspects of the consenting process and strategic approach, in respect of surface access to and from the airport.

Thames Water: Crossrail – advising Thames Water on the interface with the Crossrail (Elizabeth Line) proposals, including concluding a global framework agreement to regulate the interfaces across the Thames Water catchment.

National Express Group: west coast mainline - on the transfer of Transport and Works Act Order powers for a linear rail project, and associated transfer of third party agreements.

Docklands Light Railway: various - on several Transport and Works Act Orders for the Docklands Light Railway (for the London City Airport extension, Woolwich Arsenal extension, and Stratford International extension) at various stages.

 

Other

Olympic Delivery Authority: London 2012 Olympics - dealing with the evolution and submission of extensive and detailed planning applications and accompanying environmental impact assessments made by the ODA in respect of the London 2012 proposals in East London. 

Major housing developer: various sites - on a variety of schemes across England, including planning strategy and associated issues.

Tesco Stores: various retail schemes - on a variety of schemes across Tesco’s portfolio at varying stages in the planning process.