Sarah leads our planning and infrastructure consenting team in Scotland and is co-head of Power within the firm's Energy & Utilities Sector. She has been widely recognised as a leading lawyer in the legal directories for over 15 years and is uniquely dual qualified as an accredited specialist in planning law by the Law Society of Scotland and as a chartered town planner with the Royal Town Planning Institute. Her wealth of experience and expertise assists clients across the private and public sectors on all aspects of planning, CPO, net zero, sustainability & environmental matters. Her clients include energy & utility providers, retail operators, developers, public bodies, promoters & funders of built environment and major infrastructure schemes.
Over the last 20 years, she has gained an exceptional track record in providing strategic advice on some of the most prestigious energy, infrastructure and development projects in Scotland and further afield, often working with large multi-disciplinary team to guide major projects from early conceptual stage to their delivery and beyond. She regularly appears as an advocate & with significant expertise in appeals and legal challenges to statutory consents, she is particularly known for her ability to develop robust consenting strategies. Her practice also covers EIA and a wide range of environmental and regulated process matters including biodiversity, habitats, permitting and licences.
Current experience include:
- a number of FTSE-100 utility, energy, manufacturing & waste operators in relation to their development and investment asset portfolios including onshore/off shore wind, hydrogen, battery storage, EfW, gas, solar, biomass, thermal generation, transmission assets, CCS & commercial development.
- a number of FTSE-100 retailers, investors & funds in relation to town centre, new store, retail park & shopping centre developments across the UK together with advising on investment acquisition & disposal portfolios
- planning authorities, investors & developers in relation to a number of Scotland’s largest strategic growth areas including Glasgow Harbour, Bertha Park, Bishopton, Granton Harbour, Clyde Gateway, Shawfair, Corton & East Inverness
- the promoters of (circa £1 billion) Stirling-Alloa-Kincardine Railway (Scottish Legal Award Winner); Borders Railway; & Edinburgh Airport Rail Link (Scottish Legal Award Winner) in relation to securing development authorisation through the Scottish Parliament together with airport and harbour operators on their development & asset portfolios
- Olympic Delivery Authority on planning applications, supporting documentation, planning agreements and led on transport matters in respect of the London 2012 Olympic Games & Legacy (circa £9 billion) and the wider regeneration of Stratford
- Sarah has had publications in the Journal of the Law Society of Scotland, Scottish Planning and Environmental Law Journal, The Scottish Planner, Planning Magazine, Business Insider, Real Power Magazine, The Times, The Herald and The Scotsman. She often speaks at industry conferences and has done so for Scotland Policy Conferences, Mackay Hannah, RICS, RTPI, Industrial and Power Association, SPF and Scottish Renewables
- Professional memberships
- Law Society of Scotland
- Royal Town Planning Institute
- Law Society of Scotland Planning Law Committee
- Scottish Property Federation Planning Committee
- Construction Scotland Planning and Building Control Working Group
"Sarah Baillie has a broad planning practice and is particularly active in regeneration and waste projects. One source describes her as "responsive and knowledgeable."
Chambers UK, 2016
"Sarah Baillie is a leading name on the team, who handles both contentious and non-contentious matters. She has been busy in the retail, energy and housing sectors."
Chambers UK, 2015
"Sarah Baillie is dual-qualified, as a lawyer and chartered town planning. She offers specialist advice on planning applications for large-scale projects in the waste and energy sectors."
Chambers UK, 2014
“Sarah Baillie is sought after by a range of development clients. She was involved on behalf of Ayrshire Power regarding plans for a contested multi-fuel power station at Hunterston.”
Chambers UK 2013
“Sarah Baillie is a qualified planner who handles both contentious and non-contentious matters.”
Chambers UK 2012
“Sarah Baillie is "straightforward and direct" and "puts a lot of effort into responses". She is a dual qualified lawyer and town planner.”
Chambers UK 2011
Sarah has consistently been ranked as a 'Leading Individual' by Chambers UK since 2009.