How to appeal an ACV listing

By David Brammer

- Last updated on GMT

David Brammer: 'Numerous appeals have already been dealt with by the first tier tribunal'
David Brammer: 'Numerous appeals have already been dealt with by the first tier tribunal'

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Experts argue that a building in use is better than one left empty, which can happen at ACV-listed pubs. David Brammer, solicitor and head of planning at commercial law firm SGH Martineau, explains how licensees can appeal a listing

Despite the best of intentions, the early indications are that assets of community value (ACV) have added little to the planning system, but provided the opportunity for anti-development lobbyists to thwart development and to interfere with landowners’ commercial objectives.

People who list their local pubs are given six months and the support they need to come together with a community bid to buy it, should it be put up for sale.

One has to question the rationale behind legislation that may prevent pub owners from making decisions based upon the financial viability of their operations.

Where it is clear that it’s no longer viable for a pub to trade as a pub, surely it is better to have a building in use than to have an empty and boarded-up property vulnerable to squatters?

It is possible to appeal the decision to list a pub as an ACV, particularly where the listing is seen as likely to have a detrimental effect upon the value of the asset. The owner of the asset can request a review of the council’s initial decision, paying particular attention to whether the nominating body has drawn up their nomination correctly.

Review hearings and appeals can be dealt with by written representations and/or hearings. In challenging any decision, the asset owner would need to pay close attention to:

  • The council’s position, including the reasoning of the officer who conducted the review and evidence considered (title documents/evidence of ownership/third party use)
  • If the asset is used by the community as a recreational or other facility
  • If it has been used recently
  • If there is any evidence confirming use and/or limitations of use
  • The history of the property and any other relevant evidence (planning applications/accounts/details of public use)

Numerous appeals have already been dealt with by the first tier tribunal and some will find their way to the court of appeal because there is so much at stake for landowners.

While there are a number of issues they may wish to address, these will always vary on circumstances and the nature of the asset in question, so when in doubt, legal advice should be sought as soon as possible.

Related topics: Property law

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5 comments

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Key point missed (2)

Posted by Interested Observer,

Not all pubs are tied - only 50% or so.

The "mom and pop" freehold operation is equally caught by the legislation.

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key point missed

Posted by Dave Mountford,

A Pub that is classed as un viable by the average Pubco may be perfectly viable as a free house - perhaps ACV's purpose in life should be to give enough time to find a landlord to operate the business with out the constraints of the tie

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'Appeal against', please

Posted by Terry Collmann,

You don't "appeal a decision" in British English, you "appeal against" it.

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