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Victoria Searle

Senior Associate


+44 (0)330 045 2363


Victoria is an administrative lawyer who specialises in public law, the environment, and planning. She advises public bodies on the lawful discharge of their statutory functions, duties and powers, constitutional and administrative matters, vires, decision making, and judicial review risk.

Having worked in the Civil Service for more than a decade before joining Browne Jacobson, Victoria is deeply committed to and a passionate advocate for the public sector. Victoria’s clients benefit from her unique insight into the sector’s priorities, ways of working and culture and her ability to provide pragmatic advice that reflects the particular challenges they face. 

Victoria has a particular passion for, and specialism, in environmental law. She regularly advises central and local government, statutory nature conservation bodies, arms’ length bodies and NDPBs, registered providers of social housing, and developers on their environmental obligations. Victoria has particular expertise in the Habitats Regulations, environmental assessment, nature conservation and biodiversity.   

Victoria is a natural litigator, and her broad contentious practice includes judicial review, procurement challenges, public inquiries, and statutory appeals. She has acted for clients in the courts up to and including the Supreme Court.  

Victoria is recommended by The Legal 500 for administrative and public law, local government, and planning.

Featured experience

Civil Aviation Authority

Working with the UK’s aviation regulator to assess the environmental implications of the airspace change masterplan – a single coordinated implementation plan for airspace changes in the UK to 2040.

London Borough Of Croydon

Acting for London Borough of Croydon in the Supreme Court in R (Imam) -v- LB of Croydon [2023] UKSC 45, a landmark housing appeal on the nature of the main housing duty and the circumstances in which a court should grant mandatory relief.

Natural England

Supporting Natural England to deliver statutory advice to local authorities on the impact of new residential development on protected sites and the mitigation of adverse effects through nutrient neutrality.

Welsh Local Authorities

Working with the Welsh Local Government Association and Lawyers in Local Government (Wales) to draft a new model constitution and constitution guide for local authorities in Wales.