Lord Justice Clarke’s decision indicates that the issues raised by NANT have sufficient merit to justify examination by three senior judges in the Court of Appeal.
We feel that this vindicates our decision to start our legal action. We did not make that decision lightly but the SCDC’s intransigence left us with little choice.
The High Court Judgement earlier in the year recognised that SCDC went badly wrong procedurally at the early stages of developing its core strategy. In addition the judge further criticised SCDC in its failure to consult fully when it decided to double the housing allocation at BT Adastral Park from 1000 to 2000.
From those early stages SCDC has closed its mind to all other options. Even when the Council eventually published its own Sustainability Assessment, some 18 months after it was commissioned, which showed that Adastral Park was the least sustainable option, the Council still ploughed on. The housing allocation at Adastral Park will have a devastating impact on the Special Protection Area of the Deben Estuary.
We quite understand it is annoying for SCDC to have its decision on the BT site questioned in the courts but it has been well aware that the process it has followed in getting it to and past the Inspector was unlawful and we have been telling it so for a long time. It should realise it is high time to go back and have a full re-think and appreciate its environmental obligations properly.