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High Court rejects Northern Gateway challenge

A major leisure-led development north of Colchester has received the backing of a senior judge

A major leisure-led development north of Colchester has received the backing of a senior judge, after an application by the Tollgate Partnership for a Judicial Review of the scheme was rejected at the High Court last week (31 May 2018).

The Tollgate Partnership launched a legal challenge into the plans for the multi-million pound Northern Gateway scheme, after Colchester Council’s planning committee granted Turnstone Estates permission for the council-owned site last year.

The application for Judicial Review, which was heard by Mr Justice Holgate, centred on whether or not planning policy – in particular the ‘sequential test’ – had been applied appropriately.

Mr Justice Holgate determined that the Council had provided advice to members that was not based on any misinterpretation of planning policy nor in conflict with relevant case law. The Judge awarded the Council £8,500 costs in defending the action.

Cllr Tim Young, Portfolio Holder for Business and Culture, said: “This ruling confirms that the Council’s advice to the Planning Committee was sound and appropriate, and was based on the correct interpretation of planning policy and case law. I’m delighted the decision to grant planning permission has been demonstrated to have followed correct procedure and was entirely professional.

“We can now look forward to continuing the work with our commercial partners to deliver the Colchester Northern Gateway development, which will bring numerous benefits to the Borough, including high-quality leisure facilities and new employment opportunities.”

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