Legal fight launched against Ellesmere homes ruling

A challenge has been launched by Shropshire Council in a bid to overturn the decision to approve 68 homes in Ellesmere.

Legal fight launched against Ellesmere homes ruling

The move follows the decision last month by a planning inspector

after concluding that Shropshire Council did not have a five-year housing land supply plan.

Shropshire Council is now appealing to the High Court saying the decision was legally flawed.

Ian Kilby, Shropshire Council's planning services manager, said: "Shropshire Council has lodged a challenge under s288 of the Town and Country Planning Act to the High Court in London, on the basis that the decision in the appeal for Teal Drive is legally flawed.

"We are currently awaiting the Secretary of State's and the applicant's response to this."

Councillor Ian Ward, mayor of Ellesmere, welcomed the move to challenge the planning inspector's decision.

He said: "We are really pleased Shropshire Council is pursuing this and challenge the decision by the planning inspector.

"If it is allowed to stand then it sets a dangerous precedent in Shropshire and the rest of the country for other planning applications.

"It has very significant implications.

"It is important that this decision is challenged and we hope Shropshire Council is successful."

Traffic

David Wilson Homes said the new homes would bring much-needed affordable housing to Ellesmere and an injection of about £350,000 in housing levy to the town.

However, councillors and residents said the development would add to traffic problems and the town had more than adequate housing provision in its preferred option sites.

During the inquiry inspector Jonathan Manning visited Ellesmere before making his decision.

He said: "As a result of the evidence before me, I consider that the main issues of the appeal are: the effect of the proposal on the character and appearance of the area; whether the council can demonstrate a five-year housing land supply and whether the proposal constitutes sustainable development.

"Having regard to all other matters raised, including the strong concerns of local residents and Ellesmere Town Council, I consider that the proposal represents sustainable development."

Shropshire county councillor for Ellesmere, Councillor Ann Hartley said: "The inspector misinterpreted the situation and now the council is taking legal advice.

"Locally everyone is devastated and furious because local opinion has been ignored once again.

"Ellesmere is not against new housing at all – but it should be in the right areas."

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