Simon Bell

2003 Lincoln’s Inn

Date of call

2003 Lincoln’s Inn


LLB(Hons), Bar Vocational Course
BSB Authorised to Conduct Litigation


Planning and Environment Bar Association (PEBA)
Compulsory Purchase Association (CPA)
Administrative Law Bar Association (ALBA)
Agricultural Law Association (ALA)
Kent Law Society

Simon is a civil law barrister specialising in planning, public and local government law. He is a highly skilled litigator experienced in acting at all levels of court and tribunal in England and Wales. Formerly London-based, Simon is passionate about good, fair decision-making in public life, and has experience of advising on several high-profile government cases including matters relating to the expansion of Heathrow Airport, HS2, the Trojan Horse affair and the effects of Brexit.

He is now based in Kent, having spent several years as an in-house lawyer with the Government Legal Department and then a solicitor’s firm in Kent before moving back to the independent bar. Simon has extensive experience of working directly with clients and welcomes instructions on a direct access basis in a wide range of planning and public law cases.

Simon is driven by a commitment to helping his clients to get a fair hearing with the opportunity to put their case across, and ensuring that they have the best possible chance of achieving their objectives. He has a strong sense of justice, and aims to help people to identify and act on situations which are unfair or discriminatory. Both he and his clients value his integrity and reputation for getting the right result.

He is highly regarded for his no-nonsense approach and transparency about the likely outcome of a case. His ability to empathise with his clients’ position makes it easy for people to feel comfortable with him and confident enough to ask all the questions they wish. A highly skilled litigator, he is a strong advocate in court.

Simon is a specialist in planning and public law, with a particular interest in infrastructure litigation, judicial reviews, resolving regulatory law issues, compulsory purchase and land use work.
He provides advice and assistance to local authorities to help them make good public law decisions, as well as acting for individuals where they feel the wrong public law decisions have been made. His passion for fairness translates to a commitment to helping to ensure that appropriate development comes forward in local areas.

Simon’s experience includes:
• Planning applications & planning inquiries
• Statutory appeals & judicial reviews
• Planning Injunctions
• Enforcement Proceedings
• Local and Neighbourhood Plans
• Compulsory Purchase Orders and Development Consent Orders
• Environment Agency and Natural England investigations and Enforcement Actions
• Claims for judicial review

He welcomes instructions by local authorities, parish councils, residents’ associations and developers in planning enquiries.
Simon also welcomes instructions by members of the public under the direct access scheme, and by solicitors on behalf of their clients in a wide range of planning and public law cases.
Simon regularly represents clients in a range of disputes arising from interest or ownership of land, and is passionate about helping people to get a chance to put their case across, and giving them the best opportunity to obtain a fair outcome.
His expertise includes:

• Injunctions
• Boundary disputes
• Trespass and nuisance issues
• Landlord and Tenant disputes

Simon believes it is vital for victims of gross unfairness to be able to access expert legal support whether via a solicitor or by using the direct access scheme. His experience includes the first-ever successful challenge to a decision by a local authority to execute a compulsory purchase order, which resulted in his client having their home restored to them.
He is always upfront about the likely outcome of a case, and ensures that he offers clarity about the case that you have, and the likely outcome.
Simon also has specialisms in public and local government law both acting for and against Central and Local Government bodies and agencies. He advises and acts for individuals and organisations including neighbourhood interest groups and societies, and has experience in appeals against decisions made by the Disclosure and Barring Service, the Information Commissioner, the HSE, DVSA and many more.

He is able to advise and act in a range of areas including:

• Highways Matters
• Traffic Regulation Orders
• Low Traffic Neighbourhoods
• Tree Protection Orders
• Councillor Conduct
• Information Law
• Education Law
• Regulatory and disciplinary matters
• Statutory Nuisance

Simon was absolutely amazing at helping us with our case against the council. It has been such a long and hard battle and we were beginning to lose faith. We only wish that we had instructed Simon sooner as all his help and advice was invaluable! The leaps that Simon made in such a short space of time were phenomenal. Thank you for all your help, support and knowledge. We could not have gotten where we are without you.

Mr & Mrs N - Direct Access clients - Instructing Simon Bell

I cannot put into words just how much Simon helped us. How genuine and kind he has been and how he's held our hands through all the things we were completely clueless on how to deal with. Simon spent so much time on our case. Nothing was ever too much. He even worked during his holiday and on weekends, which I felt so bad about but also so extremely grateful. Because it was a very critical window we were working to. He is the only person we have dealt with in all of this that was true to his word and in fact did more for us than we could have ever expected. Simon, thank you for being so diligent, so fantastic at what you do and for just being all round amazing!

Direct Access client instructing Simon Bell

Simon took on our case at short notice. He offered invaluable legal advice and dealt with our case in a swift and brilliant way. His professionalism, attention to detail, sincerity and empathy reassured us that we made a superb choice. We could not have asked for a better Barrister to represent us!

Direct Access client instructing Simon Bell

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