Christiaan Zwart

Year of call:

+44 (0)20 7832 1111

“There’s an academic excellence to Christiaan Zwart – he’ll come forward with a solution and it’ll have a well-founded academic base. He’s also a masterful negotiator, a sound adviser and a good draftsman, and is very affable and easy to work with.”
Chambers & Partners

Christiaan Zwart has an extensive practice in Planning, Environmental, Public and Local Government Law. He regularly represents developers, local authorities, and government agencies, including HMRC, the EA, and HA. He has a great deal of experience at planning inquiries and hearings; at DCO, CPO and TWA hearings; at High Court challenges, the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court. He also has experience in other jurisdictions including Hong Kong and, in planning and commercial law, in Jersey.

As an infrastructure barrister Christiaan has extensive expertise in all aspects of DCOs including promoting, regulating, objecting, and advising the Examining Authority and decision taker. Christiaan’s experience includes related land rights, coastal path, access, and rights of way matters, and land taxes and levies.

As a planning barrister Christiaan has considerable experience in residential housing development. He is regularly instructed on large urban extensions and regeneration schemes. As a viability and CIL barrister Christiaan has particular expertise in fiscal planning matters.

His other areas of practice include Tax where is has appeared in numerous First Tier Tribunals, the Upper Tier Tax Tribunal and the High Court, both for and against HMRC, and in Rating hearings. As a residential VAT specialist Christiaan has particular expertise in development financial disputes.

Christiaan is regularly recommended by Chambers & Partners and also by The Legal 500 for Planning Law. He is also regularly ranked by Planning Magazine in its Top Juniors.


Christiaan is personally recommended by many clients, Chambers & Partners 2015 and also by Legal 500 2015.

He is regularly ranked by Planning Magazine in its Top Juniors.

“There’s an academic excellence to Christiaan Zwart – he’ll come forward with a solution and it’ll have a well-founded academic base. He’s also a masterful negotiator, a sound adviser and a good draftsman, and is very affable and easy to work with” Chambers & Partners 2015

“He demonstrates an exceptionally high level of attention to detail” Chambers & Partners 2015

“He helps to manage risk and avoid satellite disputes arising; his detailed drafting work is also first rate.” Legal 500 2015

“He provides very clear and thoughtful advice.” Legal 500 2015

Unsolicited client comments include:

“Wise counsel”; “enormously supportive” ; “part of the Viability dream team”; “outstanding junior”; “always does a fine job”; “excellent work”; “a pleasure to work with”; “explains complex law with great clarity”; “excellent”; “exceptionally thorough and professional”; “direct and straightforward, resourceful and very effective on his feet” ; “commercially astute”; “explains with great clarity”; “excellent guide through choppy CPO waters”; “secured the client’s objective remarkably well”.

“finds the pragmatic solution”; “ very sensible and commercial approach with client facing expertise”; “very approachable”.

“exceptional facility for language”; “advances a strong case on very complex issues”; “impressive”.

“Mr.Zwart’s reasoning is impeccable”, “Mr.Zwart’s submissions were very clear and we adopt them”.“Very well presented and prepared by Mr Zwart”, “Orderly and thorough”.

Related Cases

Planning & Environmental

Myndd y gwynt Wind Farm Order (2015)

Christiaan is acting on behalf of Welsh regulator NRW in this energy infrastructure DCO seeking consent for 27 125 m wind turbines of a notional 89MWe capacity outside of a TAN 8 designated area.

Tidal Lagoon Swansea Bay (Generating Station) Order (2014)

Christiaan was instructed by the Secretary of State to advise in relation to this energy infrastructure DCO for an innovative wave power off-shore generating station with a notional 240 MWe together with leisure boating facilities.

Recovered jurisdiction Planning Appeal Application for 550 dwellings and a Local Centre at Land at Little Maltby Farm, Low Lane, Ingleby Barwick (June 2014)

Christiaan is instructed by the local planning authority to defend this appeal at a 4 day planning inquiry where a green wedge is proposed to be built upon. The case engages the Localism paradox.

The High Speed Rail (London to West midlands) Bill

Christiaan is instructed by Accor S.A. (in respect of its subsidiaries Accor UK Economy Hotels Limited and Accor UK Business & Leisure Hotels Limited) to defend by Petition the compulsory acquisition of it’s ‘Jewel in the Crown’ Euston Ibis Hotel from being destroyed and excluded from anticipated new HS2 railway station infrastructure, and to protect its Birmingham Novotel Hotel operations from de facto extinguishment during construction of the HS2 infrastructure near the airport.

South Hook Combined Heat & Power Station DCO (2013)

Christiaan is promoting on behalf of QPI Global Ventures Limited (a subsidiary of Qatar Petroleum International Global Ventures Limited) a DCO for a new power station at Milford Haven in a national park and adjacent to QPI’s LNG terminal.

London College of Computing Ltd v HMRC [2013] UKUT 0404 (TCC).

Christiaan acted for HMRC in defending the FTT’s decision that a company was not an eligible body for the purposes of Item 1, Group 6, Schedule 9 VATA 1994.

Thames Tideway Tunnel DCO (2013)

Acting in relation to what is described as the “most complex planning application yet made”.

Part 1, Electricity Act 1989 application for 60MW electricity from waste power station, Lostock (2013)

Acting for Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change on Part 1, Electricity Act 1989 consent for new electricity power station.

London Borough of Newham (Rathbone Market) Compulsory Purchase Order (2012)

Promoting for Muse Developments an Olympic Legacy regeneration development of 652 dwellings, 4,500 sq m retail, & 2,600 sq m offices on 1 ha over 13 storeys.

Hinkley Point C (Nuclear Generating Station) Order application (2012)

Acting for Environment Agency at IPC/NID’s DCO application hearing of first nuclear energy power station in a generation with 86 Articles and 16 Schedules.

Hinkley Point C (Harbour Empowerment Order) (2012), Hinkley Point (Temporary Jetty)(Land Acquisition [TWA]) Order (2011)

Acting for Environment Agency on 3 applications for Nuclear Power Station enabling foreshore development.

Northumbrian Water Limited v HMRC

Instructed by HMRC in reservoir aggregates levy tax chamber appeal concerning extraction near Abberton Reservoir.

Rookery South Resource Recovery Facility Development Consent Order Application (2011)

Acting for housebuilder Gallaghers on first DCO application for energy from waste infrastructure serving 82,500 homes.

Manchester Ship Canal Company v Environment Agency CO /1385/2011.& CA2012/1752

Instructed by Environment Agency on judicial review of its designating developable land at flood risk in its Flood Map.

London Borough of Croydon (Park Place) Compulsory Purchase Order 2004

Acting for railway undertaker, Croydon Tramlink (light rail transit, Croydon Tramlink Act 1994) to prevent cpo of electricity apparatus, cables & rails, & maintain proper discharge of statutory obligations.

Urban Regeneration Agency (Edge Lane West, Liverpool) Compulsory Purchase Order 2005 Public Inquiry (2006)

Instructed by landowners objecting to road infrastructure (part of now discredited Pathfinder cpos).

Shui Wing v Director of Hong Kong & Airport Authority (2004 – 2006)

Instructed with Nigel Pleming QC on HK airport JR (no EIA risk assessment of aviation kerosene storage next to hot steel mill).

London Borough of Croydon (Park Place) Compulsary Purchase Order 2004 Public Inquiry (2005)

Instructed by Croydon Tramlink on retail & regeneration inquiry into Order affecting its tramway.

Camden Town Station Redevelopment TWA and Planning Public Inquiry (2004)

Instructed by landowner objecting at new tube infrastructure inquiry to tube station and tunnels in its land, promoted by London Underground Limited (operator the London Underground electrified railway & train network & some 250 stations)

Environmental & Planning

Hinkley Point C Nuclear Power Station Development Consent Order Application (2011)

Instructed by Environment Agency to advise on new infrastructure power station application.

Hinkley Point C Jetty Harbour Empowerment Orders Inquiry (2011)

Instructed by Environment Agency on applications for Power Station enabling development.


Call +44 (0)20 7832 1111 for more information

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