On 14 March 2014 Surrey County Council granted planning permission for: ‘changes to the planning conditions attached to the Charlton Lane Eco Park planning permission (Ref: SP10/0947, dated 15 March 2012) in order to incorporate minor material amendments to the approved scheme comprising a revised gasification technology, 3 new substations, other minor material amendments to the layout, buildings, structures and ancillary elements of the scheme, and a minor reduction in the tonnage of waste that would be managed on site’.
Simon assisted and advised a team of planning and legal officers over the course of the original and variation decision-making process. Issues arising included:
- The implications of the reclassification of the gasification plant as ‘disposal’ rather than ‘recovery’ in the context of the revised Waste Framework Directive and national & development plan policy;
- Safety issues and consideration of Best Available Techniques;
- Reference back (Kides); and
- The application of waste planning policy and Green Belt policy to the diverse components of the proposed development.
The local planning authority, Spelthorne Borough Council (which had raised very strong objections to the development), informed objectors that it would not be challenging the original permission, having been advised by leading counsel that it did not have a case to bring before the courts for JR. Permission was refused to claim JR of the decision to vary.