Tower Hamlets July 20 Composite 600

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Developer launches JR over councillor's interest in planning decision

A developer has begun legal action against Cornwall Council over a case where it claims a councillor failed to declare an interest in a planning decision on which he voted.

Westcountry Land (Falmouth) has lodged a claim for judicial review following the removal of the Menehay site from Cornwall’s site allocations development plan document.

It said Alan Jewell, the Conservative councillor for Falmouth Boslowick - who is seeking re-election next month - did not declare interests relating to the site, or remove himself from making the decision.

The company said Cllr Jewell owned a chalet and camping park whose main competitor stood to benefit financially were planning permission granted at Menehay, as a covenant that prevents expansion would be lifted allowing his rival to extend his business.

Westcountry Land director Justin Dodge said: “We wish to ensure that the proper process for making crucial planning decisions is followed.

“We have reluctantly had to resort to legal action to ask the court to scrutinise that process and the concerns raised. It’s in the public interest to ensure that the process is transparent and the interests of those making these decisions is properly declared.”  

A council statement said Menehay was excluded from the allocations document “for a number of reasons, one of which being that it was felt that an alternative disused brownfield site should be prioritised over the greenfield Menehay site”.  

It added: “The council denies that there was any unlawfulness in the decision to not include the Menehay site within the allocations development plan document and the council will robustly defend any challenge on this basis.”

Cllr Jewell has been contacted for comment.

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