‘the process reached an iM­passe’

Kent Messenger Maidstone - - FRONT PAGE -

Par­ties in­volved with the ap­pli­ca­tion, in­clud­ing BAM Con­struc­tion, the Val­ley In­victa Acad­e­mies Trust, and the Ed­u­ca­tion and Skills Fund­ing Agency, re­leased a joint state­ment ex­plain­ing their de­ci­sion.

“The ap­pli­ca­tion process has been lengthy, and whilst the team has pro­vided ad­di­tional in­for­ma­tion and made sig­nif­i­cant changes to the pro­posal to re­spond to con­cerns raised, the process reached an im­passe.

“The de­fer­ral on Au­gust 24 led to fur­ther de­lay as the rea­sons for de­fer­ral were dealt with in preap­pli­ca­tion dis­cus­sions or the sub­mis­sion.

“We also dis­cussed draft plan­ning con­di­tions, and al­though some amend­ments to these sought by the com­mit­tee are con­sid­ered to be ex­ces­sive, it has al­ways been agreed per­mis­sion would be sub­ject to rea­son­able con­di­tions.

“We have no in­ten­tion of by­pass­ing these, but do wish to en­sure that any im­posed meet rel­e­vant le­gal tests.

“After much de­bate and con­sid­er­a­tion, along with le­gal ad­vice, we de­cided to ap­peal against the coun­cil’s fail­ure to de­ter­mine the ap­pli­ca­tion.

“Whilst the coun­cil’s de­ci­sion is wel­comed, we do not con­sider it would have been reached with­out ap­peal, given the same scheme was de­ferred in Au­gust.

“Had an ap­proval been se­cured with­out ap­peal, it would have re­mained un­cer­tain that the con­di­tions or the le­gal agree­ment could have been agreed.

“It is there­fore with re­gret that the ap­pli­cant con­sid­ers there to be no rea­son­able prospect of plan­ning per­mis­sion be­ing de­liv­ered in a timely man­ner, and has turned to the plan­ning in­spec­torate for an in­de­pen­dent de­ci­sion.”

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