What the secretary of state’s change of heart on a green belt housing scheme tells us about the role of politics in ministerial decision-making

A secretary of state approval on appeal for 500 homes in the Bradford green reverses a previous decision on the same development less than 18 months ago. Experts say the consent, while revealing some insights into the “very special circumstances” in which green belt housing will be allowed, underlines the highly political nature of decision-making on such schemes.

The lessons to be learned from the quashing of two secretary of state major infrastructure approvals

Two approvals by secretaries of state for an offshore wind farm and an airport redevelopment, against the advice of the examining panels, were overturned in the courts in the space of a week. In both cases, ministers were found to have failed to give adequate reasoning for their decisions. Experts say the growing number of recommended refusals by inspectors and outdated national policy documents increase the risk of consents being challenged.

Jenrick faces legal action over failure to call in Cumbria mine plan

A campaign group has begun legal proceedings against communities secretary Robert Jenrick for his “ongoing refusal” to call in the decision to approve Britain’s first new deep coal mine in decades, which is currently being reconsidered by the local authority.