Midcounties Co-operative withdraws legal challenge

Midcounties Co-operative has today confirmed the withdrawal of their legal challenge to the Council’s decision to grant planning permission for a retail store at Steam Mills in Cinderford.

Confirmation of the Co-operative’s withdrawal from a Judicial Review follows the submission of a document outlining the Council’s legal arguments, together with supporting evidence compiled by IT professionals and  planners and would have been presented at a High Court hearing due to take place in London on 11 July.

The Council has previously granted planning permission for the Steam Mills site a total of four times since 2012 and on each occasion Midcounties Co-operative issued Judicial Review proceedings to quash the permission.

The latest challenge by the Co-operative was lodged in January this year, against planning permission granted on 8 December 2016. 

The challenge alleged that the Council had unlawfully tried to grant and then re-issue planning permission for the scheme and also that planners failed to consider up to date evidence of the retail impact of a new supermarket on trade in Cinderford.  The Council has continued to strongly refute both allegations since they were first made in December 2016.

The withdrawal of the challenge means that the new supermarket scheme can now go ahead.

Leader of the Forest of Dean District Council, Councillor Patrick Molyneux said: “This is excellent news for the residents of Cinderford and the wider district and yet again another positive step forward for the regeneration of Cinderford.  

“We hope that the agents for the Steam Mills site, Trilogy Developments, will re-open talks with major supermarket chains with immediate effect to encourage one of them to build a new retail store. 

“We believe that Cinderford is long overdue another supermarket and local residents as consumers should have more choice in where they choose to shop.”

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