Call for judicial review into huge Barrow homes plan

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Ribble Valley Borough Council leaders are calling for a judicial review into the approval of a controversial large-scale housing development.

Council leader Stuart Hirst is calling for serious consideration to be given for the review into a recent decision by the Planning Inspectorate relating to land south-west of Barrow and west of Whalley Road, Barrow.

As reported last week, plans to build 500 homes were given the go-ahead by a government planning inspector following an appeal by developer Barrow Lands Company Ltd.

The decision has been described “a tragedy” by Barrow Community Action Group. Ribble Valley MP Nigel Evans has also said he is appalled by the decision.

Now Coun. Hirst has asked the borough’s chief executive, Mr Marshal Scott, to make “appropriate arrangements” for a judicial review.

He explained: “There is a clear sense of injustice that increasingly this council – officers and members – are being blamed for a situation which we did not ask for, did not agree with and over which we have effectively no control, and for which – to add insult to injury – our council tax payers often end up footing the bill.”

The call for a judicial review has been welcomed by borough councillors Ian Brown, Kevin Horkin and Ged Mirfin.

Coun. Brown said: “It is important we demonstrate through a high profile judicial review that blame lies elsewhere and developers are exploiting the current legal avenues for their own cynical ends.”

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