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Chambers of Paul Brown QC and Rupert Warren QC.

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James Maurici QC

Work 020 7430 1221
Landmark Chambers (Chambers of Paul Brown QC and Rupert Warren QC.)


James practises in planning; environmental law and public law (including local government). James has appeared in numerous cases before the European Court of Justice and the General Court (formerly the Court of First Instance) and has appeared a number of times before the UNECE Aarhus Compliance Committee in Geneva. James works for a wide range of public sector clients, private clients and public interest groups. In 2010 James was awarded Junior of the Year in the Planning and Environment category of the Chambers & Partners Bar Awards. James’ planning practice encompasses all aspects of planning both at inquiries and hearings and in the Higher Courts. His practice also encompasses compulsory purchase and compensation, harbours, highways, rights of way, commons registration and village greens (both inquiries and in the Higher Courts). James regularly advises on the EU public procurement and state aid issues arising in the planning and compulsory purchase context. James has appeared at several Core Strategy examination hearings for developers. He is currently involved in promoting a number of major housing schemes. He recently appeared at an inquiry promoting a large scale solar farm. His recent high-profile planning cases include acting for the Government in the Redhill v SSCLG [2014] EWCA Civ 1386 case on the meaning of ‘any other harm’ in Green Belt policy. He also acted for the Government on challenges to High Speed 2 (Buckinghamshire & Others v Secretary of State for Transport [2014] 1 W.L.R. 324); the revocation of Regional Strategies R (Cala Homes) v Secretary of State for Communities & Local Government) Nos.1 and 2 [2011] 2 E.G.L.R. 75); and the proposed Heathrow Runway 3 R (Hillingdon) v Secretary of State for Transport [2010] J.P.L. 976). He also acted for FCC Environment in their legal challenge under the Planning Act 2008 to the Rookery South (Resource Recovery Facility) Order 2011. James’ environmental law practice is wide-ranging, covering matters such as habitats and species protection, contaminated land, air quality, waste, access to environmental information, statutory and common law nuisance and all aspects of environment impact assessment, strategic environmental assessment and environmental permitting. He has particular expertise on climate change issues, and especially emissions trading. He has also been involved in a number of matters concerning marine environmental issues. He regularly appears in the Court of Justice of the European Union, and the General Court of the European Union (formerly the European Court of First Instance) on environmental matters. Recent cases include: Case C 279/12 Fish Legal & Emily Shirley v The Information Commissioner, United Utilities, Yorkshire Water and Southern Water [2014] 2 W.L.R. 568 (the meaning of public authority under the Environmental Information Directive); Case C-43/12 Commission v European Parliament and Council (cross-border exchange of on road safety related traffic offences); Case C 530/11 Commission v United Kingdom and Case C-260/11 Edwards v Environment Agency (costs and environmental judicial reviews); Case C-567/10 Inter-Environnement Bruxelles ASBL, (strategic environmental assessment) 22/3/2012. His public law practice includes housing (see eg Yemshaw v Hounslow LBC [2011] 1 W.L.R. 433), social security (including national insurance) (see eg Zalewska v Department for Social Development [2008] UKHL 67), education (James is himself a Chair of Governors at a state primary school), regulatory, local government including local government finance (see eg R (Cheshire East BC) v Secretary of State for the Environment Queen’s Bench [2011] EWHC 1975 (Admin)); EU law and all aspects of human rights law. He has appeared in a number of high profile public law cases including: R (Sharon Shoesmith) v Ofsted and Others [2011] P.T.S.R. 1459; R (Bradley and others) v Secretary of State for Work & Pensions [2009] Q.B. 114; Ken Livingstone v Adjudication Panel for England [2006] H.R.L.R. 45; R v. Bow Street Magistrate, ex p. Pinochet Ugarte (No. 2) [2000] 1 A.C. 119 and the Alconbury litigation [2003] 2 A.C. 295. He was also part of the counsel team, acting for 169 Iraqi claimants alleging systemic abuse by the Armed forces in Iraq R (Ali Zaki Moussa) v the Secretary of State for Defence (No. 2) [2013] H.R.L.R. 32. James has particular experience in cases involving the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman and the Local Government Ombudsman. He has been involved in a number of cases concerning public law challenges in the health context: see eg R. (Jeremiah) v Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman [2013] EWHC 1085 (Admin); R. (Mencap) v Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman [2012] P.T.S.R. D17; Flasz v Havering Primary Care Trust [2011] EWHC 1487 (Admin) and R (Primary Health Investment Properties Ltd) v Secretary of State for Health [2009] P.T.S.R. 1563.


James Maurici was called to the Bar of England and Wales in 1996 (and the Bar of Northern Ireland in 2009). He was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 2013. He practices in planning; environmental law; and public law. His practice regularly encompasses EU and international law. He was a member of the Attorney-General’s London Panels of Junior Counsel to the Crown from 1999-2013. He previously also served on the Welsh Assembly Government’s Junior Counsel Panel from 2009 to 2013. He has extensive experience of appearing in the Higher Courts as well as at inquiries and in front of other tribunals.


Administrative Law Bar Association; United Kingdom Environmental Law Association (UKELA); Planning and Environment Bar Association; Human Rights Lawyers Association; United Kingdom Association for European Law; Compulsory Purchase Association; Bar European Group; National Infrastructure Planning Association (NIPA); UK State Aid Law Association; elected to the Council of the United Kingdom Environmental Law Association (June 2008) and is also on the executive committee.


Hertford College, Oxford (Jurisprudence BA, 1st Class 1994; BCL 1st Class 1995); previously a part-time college lecturer in European Law at Hertford College, Oxford.

London Bar

Civil liberties and human rights (including actions against the police)

Within: Leading Silks

James Maurici QC - Landmark Chambers ‘ A supremely calm and magisterial leader. ’

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Within: Leading Silks

James Maurici QC - Landmark Chambers ‘ A star of the Bar, he is a “go-to” barrister for major government work and on the public law side he is hard to match. ’

Within: Environment

Landmark Chambers is ‘a place of calm and the barristers and clerks are really helpful and professional’. Members frequently act for government agencies, regulators, corporate clients and private individuals in diverse matters relating to air quality, access to environmental justice, waste, contaminated land, pollution, climate change, emissions trading, environmental permitting and regulation, habitats and species protection, and nuisance, among other issues. 'It is our "go-to" chambers – in my mind, the leading planning set at the moment', remarks one client. Another notes that 'the clerks take the extra step in trying to build relationships'. David Elvin QC acted for the government in Preston New Road Action Group v Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, concerning the lawfulness of the decision to undertake exploratory drilling preparatory to fracking. James Maurici QC is defending five judicial reviews against the Airports National Policy Statement under the Planning Act 2008 relating to the proposed new runway at Heathrow Airport.

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Within: Leading Silks

James Maurici QC - Landmark Chambers ‘ The go-to man for anything really big. ’

Within: Planning

'The pre-eminent planning set', 'totally dominant' Landmark Chambers has 'unrivalled strength in depth, with an enviable list of senior and junior counsel'. James Maurici QC represented the Secretary of State for Transport in the challenges to the London Heathrow third runway project.  In the Supreme Court, Richard Moules represented the local authorities, and 2019 silk appointment Charles Banner QC represented Transport for London, in Transport for London v City of London & Southwark LBC, in which the Supreme Court grappled with the meaning of the word "highway" in the Highways Act 1980. In addition, Stephen Whale represented Ealing Council and Reuben Taylor QC acted for Queen's Park Rangers in a Court of Appeal challenge to a grant of planning permission for the football club's new training ground.

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