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High Court judge rejects bid for judicial review of major development in Essex

A High Court judge has dismissed an application for judicial review brought over a multi-million pound development on council-owned land in Essex.

The Tollgate Partnership was seeking to challenge the grant of planning permission by Colchester Council’s planning committee to Turnstone Estates for the Northern Gateway scheme.

Mr Justice Holgate rejected the application for judicial review last month (31 May 2018).

The council said the dispute centred on whether or not planning policy – in particular the ‘sequential test’ – had been applied appropriately.

Colchester added that the judge had 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.

Mr Justice Holgate awarded the council £8,500 costs in defending the action.

Cllr Tim Young, Portfolio Holder for Business and Culture at Colchester, 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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