Robert Williams > Cornerstone Barristers > London, England > Lawyer Profile

Cornerstone Barristers

Work Department

Public law; planning and environment; property.


Rob is a specialist in public and administrative, planning and environmental, and compulsory purchase law.

In September 2017, Rob was appointed  to the Attorney General’s ‘B Panel’ of Counsel, having previously been on the ‘C Panel’ for a period of 5 years.

He regularly appears in the higher courts, and at inquiries, on behalf of central and local government,  other public bodies and private parties. Recent examples of his work include:

Court work

Relta Ltd v Greater London Authority [2017] EWHC 671 (Admin) – appeared for the GLA in respect of a judicial review challenge to the decision by the London of Mayor to designated Bromley Town Centre as a Housing Zone. The claim raised issues of interpretation and application of the Mayor’s policy.

R (on the application of Headcorn Parish Council) v Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government [2017] EWHC 970 – represented SSCLG in a judicial review challenge to the Secretary of State’s screening direction in respect of a proposed housing development.

Planning appeals 

Andover Business Park, Test Valley (2018) – represented the LPA in a six-day inquiry on the issue of whether a planning obligation which barred lorries from using certain highway routes was necessary and met the Reg 122 tests.

Buckles Wood Farm, North Chailey (2018) – appeared on behalf of the promoter of a 35-unit housing scheme at a five-day inquiry, raising issues including the relative sustainability of the proposal in an area where there are significant environmental constraints.

Tamworth Farmhouse, Reigate (2018) – acted for a Rule 6 party/neighbour in a seven-day enforcement inquiry raising a wide range of issues including validity of the notice, immunity from enforcement, and impact on Green Belt of a vehicle depot.

Local Plan examinations

Guildford Local Plan examination (2018) – advised and acted Guildford Borough Council in the preparation for, and examination of, their Local Plan.

West Sussex County Council Joint Minerals Local Plan examination (2017) – represented the primary objectors to the main allocation for soft sand extraction in the draft Local Plan. This resulted in the proposed allocation of a soft sand quarry being deleted from the plan, and the policy being found unsound.


Constitutional and Administrative Law Bar Association (ALBA); Planning and Environment Bar Association (PEBA).


Called: 2008

Lawyer Rankings

London Bar > Planning

(Leading Juniors)Ranked: Tier 3

Robert Williams  – Cornerstone Barristers ‘Rob has a very strong attention to detail, and a critical eye for inquiry evidence.  He can assimilate complex technical data and present it as compelling and persuasive arguments.  Rob has an extraordinary ability to give confidence to seasoned and new expert witnesses at appeal, and he can galvanise a team around an argument.’