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Introduction to Planning Law

  • Date(s)
    Thursday, 25 April 2019
  • Time(s)
    10:30 AM - 5:30 PM
  • Venue
    Engineers Ireland, 22 Clyde Road, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4, Ireland
  • Fee

    Members:  €245
    Non-Members: €295

    NOTE: You can only book online using credit or debit card details.  If your preferred method of payment is by invoice / purchase order / bank transfer / other, please contact the CPD Training Team on 01-6651305, or email to secure a place.

  • CPD Credit
    6.5 hours   C1



It is impossible to deliver projects without careful attention to the legal framework for authorisation. That framework has had been changed 6 times since 2000, and court judgments are changing our understanding of it all the time. This programme will introduce you to the fundamentals and keep you on top of the important developments.

Course aim

To provide delegates with a solid foundation, refresh or update on the principal planning laws relevant to the professional practice of engineers.


The course will cover the key aspects of planning law in a structured and methodical manner, working through the following themes:

  • Key concepts: development, works, material change of use, exempted development.
  • The development plan, local area plans, regional spatial strategies, and the national development plan.
  • Permission and exempted development.
  • Strategic infrastructure.
  • Strategic Development Zones.
  • Protected structures.
  • The application process.
  • The appeals process.
  • Assessments – strategic environmental assessment, environmental impact assessment and appropriate assessment; and their impact on planning.
  • Judicial review of decisions.
  • Unauthorised development and enforcement.

Learning Objectives

This programme will allow delegates to:

  • Get comfortable with the structure of the system;
  • Understand the legal instruments – Acts and Statutory Instruments, but also Directions and Guidelines and their place in the system, as well as the EU’s Treaties, Regulations and Directives; and
  • Learn how the delivery of major infrastructure or other client work is achieved lawfully and without tears.

Who should attend

Engineers who want to enhance, refresh or update their knowledge and understanding of planning laws.


Alan Doyle, LL.B. (Dub), LL.M. (Bruges)

Alan Doyle qualified as a solicitor in 1994. He has a masters in European Law from the College of Europe, Bruges, 1994, after which he worked in the firm of Van Bael and Bellis in Brussels, specialising in internal market and competition law. He was an associate in TTL Overend McCarron & Gibbons, solicitors, from 1996. From 1996 – 99 he also lectured in environmental law, planning law and private international law in NUI Galway. He was a partner in Barry Doyle and Company from 2001 to 2018, and in McDowell Purcell from 2018-19 prior to being called to the bar. He has been involved in over 450 environmental and planning judicial reviews on behalf of regulators (notably the EPA and Bord Pleanala), industry and environmental groups. He also works on enforcement of planning and environmental law, and has obtained injunctions against unauthorised landfills, non-compliant waste transfer stations and unauthorised quarries. His work takes him to all courts, from the District Court to the Supreme Court and the Court of Justice of the EU. He advises on all aspects of environmental and planning law, as well as related issues such as Access to Information on the Environment and Data Protection.

Make a Booking

25 April 2019


Confirmation is subject to event fee being finalised. Cancellation fees calculated at 50% of the estimated total bill will be charge for confirmed bookings cancelled less than 5 working days prior to the date of the planned event. A replacement person can attend instead. Cancellations made the day prior to an event will be charged 75% of the total estimated bill. No-shows will be charged the full fee. All cancellations must be confirmed in writing by email. Engineers Ireland will not be liable for any costs in the event of a course being re-scheduled.  This applies, but is not limited, to any travelling, subsistence or consequential expenses incurred by delegates.