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Council refused permission to bring judicial review challenge over approval by neighbouring authority of new link road

A High Court judge has refused Luton Council permission to bring a judicial review of Central Bedfordshire Council’s decision to approve an application for a major new link road.

Luton had claimed that local plan examination inspectors’ letters calling the plan into question were not properly considered.

The planning application, which was made and received by Central Bedfordshire Council in March 2019, was for a new single and dual carriageway road linking the M1 and the A6 near Luton.

Luton had wanted to delay the decision to enable the local plan inspectors to view the scheme and make sure Central Bedfordshire Council had fully considered the potential impact of the proposed development on Luton residents and businesses.

Mr Justice Jay in the High Court refused to grant Luton permission for the challenge.

Responding to the decision, Luton said: "We were disappointed to receive the news that our application for a judicial review against Central Bedfordshire Council’s decision to grant permission for the M1-A6 link road had been refused.

"Prior to seeking a JR, we had made four objections to the planning application and spoken at the planning committee meetings.

"We wrote to the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government requesting that they call-in the M1-A6 planning application for his determination, however the Secretary of State declined to call in the application.

"We do not intend to challenge the decision."

A spokesperson for Central Bedfordshire said: "We have been informed that the application by Luton Borough Council seeking permission to judicially review Central Bedfordshire Council’s decision on the A1-M6 Link Road application has been refused by the court.

“In drawing this conclusion, the judge also made an order for costs against Luton Borough Council.

“There will now be a seven day period during which Luton can decide whether to renew their application against this decision. If they decide not to do so this will provide certainty for us to progress work on this piece of infrastructure.”

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