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Cost to council of four-day Knights Hill public inquiry revealed

PUBLISHED: 13:43 10 November 2020 | UPDATED: 13:43 10 November 2020

Hundreds turned out to protest at proposals for hundreds of new homes at Knights Hill  Picture: Chris Bishop

Hundreds turned out to protest at proposals for hundreds of new homes at Knights Hill Picture: Chris Bishop

Archant

Taxpayers will be left with a £50,000 bill after an appeal to build 600 new homes succeeded.

A sign protesting at the proposed Knights Hill development  Picture: Chris BishopA sign protesting at the proposed Knights Hill development Picture: Chris Bishop

West Norfolk council turned down the development at Knights Hill, on the outskirts of King’s Lynn, in March 2019.

It said the scheme would adversely affect the historic setting of Castle Rising and have an “unacceptable and severe” impact on the local road network.

The decision, which was contrary to the advice of the case officer, came as hundreds packed King’s Lynn Town Hall to protest against the plans. The land had also been earmarked for development in the council’s own local plan.

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Developer Camlands appealed and a four-day public inquiry was held in January, after which a government inspector overturned the council’s decision.

Now a report to councillors says the authority’s costs bill has come to £50,237 plus VAT.

It says this covered the appeal venue at Knights Hill Barn, expert witnesses and legal representation, which were required to put forward the council’s case.

It adds: “Officer time in dealing with the appeal was significant, although there was no cost attributed to this.”

Councillors on the corporate performance panel have been asked to note the report.


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