High Court tells Herefordshire Council to get its act together on housing
A Victory for Democracy and Accountability;
Local councillors have hailed the decision of the High Court to block housing at Bullinghope as a victory for local democracy and accountability. On Thursday 24th July the Court ruled that Herefordshire Council had manipulated the democratic UDP process to allocate land for housing at Bullinghope simply to fund the Rotherwas Road .
Campaigners have hailed the decision of the High Court to rule out housing at Bullinghope to fund a road scheme as a late but welcome victory for better town planning processes in Herefordshire.
Dinedor Hill Action Association had brought an action to the High Court under Section 287 of the Town and Country Planning Act.
The Court ruled that the Council had manipulated the democratic UDP process to allocate land for housing at Bullinghope simply to fund the Rotherwas Road and had thus:
- ignored the findings of the Unitary Development Plan enquiry
- Given inadequate consideration to the impact of development on the area
- Prejudiced a proper countywide assessment of future housing
DHAA spokesperson Peter Cocks said: "This victory puts the Council on notice that it must adhere more closely to proper planning processes. The Council must not use inappropriate housing development to fund new roads."
"Allowing more housing in this area would have set an appalling precedent for urban sprawl in Hereford with all the implications that has for the destruction of valuable countryside and increasing traffic congestion. We are delighted that the High Court has backed the original decision of the planning inspector."
"By not following proper practice the Council forced local people to go to the High Court at tax payer expense. This is completely unnecessary and all the Council need to do to avoid it in future is follow the rules and stop treating the public with contempt."
"The cabinet has shown its willingness to trash the environment and its own policies on affordable housing in order to get big housing developers to buy it roads to nowhere. This is not a good sign. In fact, when climate change and the demand for 16,000 new households should be top priorities, it's appalling. This judgement means no more big houses in the wrong places."
"Cabinet need to show in future that they can follow simple procedures so that they avoid being reprimanded like this in future."
Posted by moss
25th July 2008ce
Edited 25th July 2008ce