Book review - Simons on Planning Law (3rd Edition) by David Browne

Pagespp 171 - 176
Published date12 July 2022
Date12 July 2022
Simons on Planning Law
Simons on Planning Law by David Browne (ird Edition, Round Hall, 2021)
Despite – or perhaps because of – the rapidly changing nature of Irish planning
law, it has been some years since a comprehensive treatment of the subject was
committed to print. e previous edition of Simons on Planning Law was published
in 2007; John Gore-Grimes’ Planning and Environmental Law in Ireland was
published in 2011; and Berna Grist’s An Introduction to Irish Planning Law (2nd
edition) was published in 2012. As such, the publication of David Browne’s
excellent new edition of Simons on Planning Law is very much to be welcomed.
While in form and in price the book is more of a practitioner text than a textbook,
those teaching planning law will nd invaluable material here for themselves and
their students, and those practising will no doubt nd the text an indispensable and
frequent source of reference. For those seeking out a particular point, in addition to
its contents and index, the book is usefully accompanied by a separate slim volume
containing tables of cases and legislation. It is a mark of the quality of the book that
this new edition has already been cited some sixteen times by the superior courts at
the time of writing,1 less than a year aer its publication.
is third edition of Simons on Planning Law, by David Browne BL – an
experienced practitioner at the Bar as well as the author of e Law of Local
Goernment (2nd edition, Round Hall, 2020) and co-author (with Patrick
McGovern) of Procurement Law in Ireland (Round Hall, 2018) – builds on the
strong foundations of the two earlier editions. e book presents a usefully deep
analysis of the development of Irish planning law by means of retaining much of
the earlier text (edited and updated, as appropriate), whilst layering signicant
new material on top, covering a myriad of developments in planning law since the
second edition. Indeed, at almost 1,800 pages, this third edition is almost double
the length of the previous edition, reecting the complexity of the subject as well
as the very signicant changes in planning law and policy that have arisen between
2007 and 1 April 2021 (the date to which the law is stated in the third edition).
For example, as Browne notes, appropriate assessment under the Habitats Directive2
‘had not really featured’ in Irish case law by the time the second edition was
* Dr Andrew Jackson is Assistant Professor of Planning and Environmental Law at UCD Sutherland
School of Law and a consultant solicitor with O’Connell and Clarke Solicitors. Any opinions
expressed in this book review are those of the author alone.
1 Based on a search of as of 3 June 2022.
2 Council Directive 92/43/EEC of 21 May 1992 on the conservation of natural habitats and of wild
fauna and ora [1992] OJ L206.

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