Womble Bond Dickinson (WBD) has once again been ranked in the UK's top 10 planning law firms by leading industry magazine Planning Resource.
In this 24th edition of the Planning Law Survey, which profiles the best law firms, council legal departments and solicitors, WBD ranked 9th in the Highest Rated Planning Law Firms in the UK and 5th for the firm employing the most planning lawyers. WBD's national planning team was recognised on the back of its expertise advising public and private sector clients on a range of high profile projects. Key highlights over the past year have included:
- advising NHS Property Services on a successful Supreme Court appeal decision on a village green case;
- leveraging the firm's WBD Advance platform to support Highways England with the production of Development Consent Orders (DCOs) using a be-spoke automation tool created by the firm. The tool has streamlined the drafting of DCOs and presented many cost and efficiency savings for the client;
- as 'the transatlantic law firm close to home', WBD has also supported businesses and organisations in its community with key planning expertise, and recently advised Ambition Community Energy, a community interest company, on its successful planning application for a 150m-tall wind turbine in Avonmouth, near Bristol - this is believed to be the tallest onshore wind turbine consented in England;
- in collaboration with planning and design consultancy Barton Willmore and specialist infrastructure and development communications consultancy Copper, WBD carried out a national infrastructure and development planning review to look at whether DCOs can help meet the challenges of our time. A report was produced, bringing together the many different constituents of the planning process, to learn from each other and co-create real-world solutions.
Jon Bower, partner and head of planning and infrastructure at WBD, commented:
"Our team is one of the leading planning practices in the UK and we're thrilled to have been once again ranked in this year's Planning Law Survey. This is a tribute to our expertise, the collaborative nature and hard work of our team working alongside clients and project teams and to the many high profile projects we have delivered for our clients including in the clean energy, transport, regeneration and housing sectors."
"Listed in the Top 30 most innovative law firms in Europe by the Financial Times, we're proud to demonstrate our ability to discover and apply innovative solutions from a different perspective as well as work together with our clients to develop and deliver effective new ways of working."
Recognised by Chambers Legal Directory as a national leading practice for planning and infrastructure, WBD's planning and real estate teams work for a broad range of clients including commercial developers in the energy, residential, transport, waste, manufacturing and retail sectors as well as many local authorities.