M&S has been given the green light to challenge Michael Gove over his decision to reject the store’s plans to revamp its flagship shop in Marble Arch.
Boss of the high street favourite, Stuart Machin, said today that the firm “received confirmation that the High Court has recognised the merits of our legal challenge on Marble Arch”.
Now, a judicial review is set to take place next year and M&S will still have to convince the courts that Gove made an error earlier this year when he halted the store’s makeover plans.
In a statement on X, formally known as Twitter, Machin said: “Every single one of the six counts we raised has been recognised, which means our case has been approved to proceed to the next stage of judicial review.
“We have been clear from the very start that refurbishment of the existing store is not possible, so this is only the first step in the lengthy process of overturning the government’s senseless decision to reject our Marble Arch proposal – the only retail-led regeneration on Oxford Street.”
M&S initially received a green light from Westminster City Council to tear down its Marble Arch store and replace it with a revamped shop featuring a new cafe, offices and a gym.
However, the move received push back from campaigners, prompting the secretary of state for levelling up and housing to launch an inquiry and eventually block the proposals.
In a 127-page document, Gove claimed that public benefits did not outweigh the damage that would be done to landmarks on the street, including luxury department store Selfridges.
The M&S chief previously branded the secretary of state’s decision to block the build as “utterly pathetic” and accused Gove of taking an “anti-business approach”.
City A.M. has contacted the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities for comment.