Appeal date set on decision to refuse motorway service station plans

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An appeal against the decision to refuse a motorway service station project on the M62 – including a 100-bed hotel – is due to start in March.

Extra MSA’s application for a block permit for the site north of Junction 11 at Birchwood was rejected by the development management committee in June.

The program included proposals for a hotel with a capacity of up to 100 beds, a service yard, a service station, an electric charging station, landscaping and parking areas and associated infrastructure.

The members refused the request after judging that the proposed development would constitute an inappropriate development in the green belt and, by definition, would be detrimental to the green belt. The applicant’s case for very special circumstances was not considered to be greater than the harm caused to the green belt.

A report on the matter will be presented to the Development Management Committee when it meets on Thursday.

It says the claimant appealed at the end of 2021 – and the Town Planning Inspectorate confirmed the appeal was valid and would be heard via the inquiry procedure.

A nine-day public inquiry is due to open on March 23.

The purpose of the report is to provide members with further information regarding the appeal.

It says: ‘Council has appointed a solicitor to represent council at the inquest.

“Members are invited to confirm in light of the information provided in this update report and taking into account counsel’s advice set out in the Part 2 report whether they wish to continue to defend the appeal.

“If the members confirm that the council should continue to defend the reason for the refusal on appeal, then evidence will be prepared by an officer concerning the case presented in the officer’s report to the DMC on June 9, 2021 and evidence will also be prepared by a committee. member in relation to the committee’s decision on the planning review, which will take into account the updates described above, including support for enforcement by national roads.

“If the members decide not to argue the ground for refusal on appeal, the appeal will still continue.

“There is also the Rule 6 party involved in the appeal who has the right to appear at the inquest and to cross-examine the other parties.

“Council’s role would be to assist the investigation where possible and to clarify its position with respect to the necessary terms and the s106 agreement.”

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