by simongalton on 16 September, 2008
Following an intensive campaign a local protest group in Warwickshire has successfully managed to have a judicial review enacted. The group called BARD received the ruling from Mr Justice Collins on 11th September. The outcome is a review to be presented by the High Court before the year end which could potentially set the precedent that affects all eco-town proposals. In particular the judge made many comments about the role of the Ministry for Communities and Local Government in the process and how this could be seen to undermine the planning system. The judge wrote: “I note there must be concern that the defendant [Secretary of State for Communities & Local Government] may have disqualified herself from considering any planning application for an eco-town because of perceived bias in its favour.
Simon Galton, whose seat comprises most of the area designated for development if Pennbury ecotown is allowed expressed his ‘delight and hope’ that this would start a proper scrutiny of the ecotown process. He said: “I have said often that this entire process is unfair and simply side steps the local planning system. I am incredibly hopeful that the judicial review will highlight what I consider to be intrinsic flaws of the proposed ecotown’s selection process, including the bespoke planning policy statement and am delighted that a local pressure group has been able to get this far.” To see BARD’s press release go to: http://www.bardcampaign.comLeave a comment