Judge rules in favour of Council’s Core Strategy


Rochford District Council has successfully defended a legal claim against its Core Strategy.


The Core Strategy - the key planning document for the entire District that sets out how the area will develop over the next 15 years, addressing issues such as housing, employment, town centre enhancements, and the environment, had been subject to a legal challenge by Cogent LLP.


Following a court hearing in Cardiff at the end of May a judgment has now been issued which rules in favour of Rochford District Council.


The legal challenge brought by Cogent Land LLP sought to quash certain policies namely; H1, H2, H3 and paragraphs 4.1 to 4.31 in the Core Strategy which relate to Housing.


The Leader of Rochford District Council, Councillor Terry Cutmore, said: “This is fantastic news both for the Council and for residents who have been living with the uncertainty this latest legal challenge has brought.”


Rochford District Council’s Portfolio Holder for Planning and Transportation, Councillor Keith Hudson, said: “We're delighted, but not surprised to see that the Judge has agreed, in substance, with the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government that our plans are "sound" and "legally compliant".


Rochford District Council's Core Strategy represents five years of hard work, proper community engagement and careful planning by both officers and Elected Members; it has undergone examination and scrutiny at every stage and has been found to be a robust document clearly setting out our plans for the future of the District.


The Core Strategy has protected our residents from uncontrolled and unnecessary development in inappropriate locations for past years and will now continue to do so, looking to the future.


I sincerely apologise to our residents whose homes and lives have been blighted by the uncertainty that has been brought about by the delays caused by the various court actions. Unfortunately the Council had no control over these events.