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Council sends planning application back to committee after parish legal threat

Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council is to send a full planning application for a storage and distribution warehouse near the M3 back to its Development Control Committee, after a parish council challenge wrote to challenge the legality of the decision.

In April this year the committee had voted to approve the application but planning permission has not been granted as the government’s Planning Case Work Unit is still considering a request to the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government to call-in the application. While this is under consideration a decision notice cannot be issued.

However, Dummer Parish Council wrote to Basingstoke & Deane challenging the legality of the decision, based on what it considers to be an error in the information given to the committee about how visible the development would be from the village.

Russell O’Keefe, Basingstoke & Deane’s chief executive, said: “It is important that we are robust and transparent in our decision making. The council has carefully considered Dummer Parish Council’s letter challenging the decision on the application and taken legal advice.

“We have decided that the best way forward is to take the application back to the Development Control Committee. This is possible as a way of resolving this, as the decision notice has not yet been issued owing to the Secretary of State considering a call-in request.”

The move means that, unless Basingstoke & Deane receives notification from the Secretary of State that he is to determine the planning application, it will be re-determined by the Development Control Committee meeting later this year. The date of the committee will be announced once it has been set, the borough council said.

The Secretary of State, Dummer Parish Council and the applicant have all been informed of the decision, it added.