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Disappointed, but not Beaten, on Princes Parade

Princes ParadeSad news for all of us campaigning against the development of Princes Parade from Folkestone and Hythe District Council today. The have issued a press release saying:

"Permission to appeal the judicial review of the planning permission for the Princes Parade development has been refused today (3 December 2020).

"Lord Justice Newey upheld the previous judgement of Mr. Justice Dove - refusing the appeal and upholding the judicial review proceedings in their entirety.

"Last November Folkestone & Hythe District Council's (F&HDC) planning decision was upheld by the High Court with the judge - Mrs. Justice Lieven - rebutting the arguments for judicial review in turn. She awarded up to £5,000 to the council in costs."

As an email from "Save Princes Parade" today says:

"We heard today from our solicitor that we have been refused leave to appeal against the Judicial Review decision.

"We are slightly baffled at the decision of the Courts not to allow our appeal because our legal team felt very strongly that there were significant grounds, to challenge the original decision. This decision however, makes little difference to the campaign to Save Princes Parade. We will now simply shift our focus away from the Council as the Planning Authority and onto the Council as the developer.

"We will be particularly focusing on the risks associated with the proposals and potential for the Council to lose at great deal of local people's money pursuing a development that is not required and opposed by the majority of local people, as witnessed by the 2019 local elections. The true value of Princes Parade has certainly been felt during lockdown.

"The Princes Parade solution is certainly not the cheapest and quickest means of providing a new swimming pool, contrary to what FHDC has claimed in the past."

They are right. This is not over. The legal case against the development of Princes Parade wasn't the main argument in my view - it is the financial, risk and enviromental arguments against Princes Prade development which still exist. This was a risky project with Council finances in good shape. Council finances have now taken a battering (like most other Councils) as an impact of Covid. What was before a big risk is now an even more unacceptable one.