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In the news:- Judge “robustly refuses” judicial review application

Judge “robustly refuses” judicial review application
12 October 2017

Basildon Council has welcomed the decision of a High Court Judge today (12 October, 2017) to “robustly refuse” an application to judicially review its decision not to determine a traveller’s planning application for a plot of land west of Hovefields Avenue, Wickford.

The decision by Mr Justice Gilbart today comes after Judge Waksman QC had, on 21 August 2017, agreed with the council’s argument that its decision was lawful. However, the applicant, Michael Smith, exercised his right to have the order reconsidered at an oral hearing.

The council had already been awarded all costs claimed which amount to more than £5,000.

The council had used the planning power not to determine the application because enforcement notices had already been served to remove unauthorised development that had already taken place on the land.

Parliament introduced this legal measure to prevent delays in the ability to enforce planning notices.

Cllr Gavin Callaghan, Basildon Council’s Chairman of the Policy and Resources Committee, said: “We welcome this decision and will continue to do all we can to ensure those with flagrant disregard for the law are pursued through the courts.

"This decision is further evidence that the tactics Basildon Council uses in respect of dealing with illegal developments works. We have a long-established track record of effective operational decisions that help to progress action against those who break the law.

“This council will continue to do everything possible to ensure that we fully enforce all available legal powers given to Local Authorities to tackle illegal development in the borough, just as we always have done."

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