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BURY MBC FIGHTS FOR GREEN BELT STATUS

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Bury MBC's fight to preserve land which should be protected as green belt is expected to be heard in the high court...
Bury MBC's fight to preserve land which should be protected as green belt is expected to be heard in the high court next week.

Monday 20 April has been listed for legal submissions as the council continues to refuese to simply walk away from the controversy surrounding 18 acres of land at Spen Moor.

Already the local authority has resisted a government inspector's recommendation, on an amendment to the unitary development plan, that the area should not be green belt listed. That in turn has led to the legal challenge by developers Peel Investments (Northern) Ltd., who own the land in question.

Having looked at all the criteria ,and considering advice from officers and legal counsel, councillors have decided that 'adequate planning justification has been given for the decision taken tht exceptional circumstances, as set out in the council's statement of decisions and reasons on proposed modifications to the plan, do exist which justify the retention of this site within the green belt.'

Bury's council leader Derek Boden said: 'The original legal challenge from Peel Investments came as little surprise but we feel it is in the interest of the borough to fight to protect this land at Spen Moor.

'We believe we are right to try and retain green belt designated areas wherever we can. Going to the high court is not something that we do lightly but we feel strongly in this instance that we would be failing local people if we did not take the appropriate legal action.'

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