| CAMPAIGN UPDATE - AT A GLANCE
Member Update - March 2019
Stansted Airport Planning Application 2018
It has been quite some time since we last updated you on SSE campaign news. The principal reason for our silence is that we are still awaiting a decision from the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government (James Brokenshire) as to whether or not he will call in the Stansted Airport planning application for 43 million passengers per annum which was approved by Uttlesford District Council ('UDC') on 14 November 2018.
Immediately following UDC's approval of the planning application - which you will recall was approved only by the Chairman's additional casting vote - the Secretary of State intervened by instructing UDC not to confirm the planning consent without his approval. This intervention was as a result of a series of legal and other representations which SSE had made to the Secretary of State beginning on 19 March 2018, exactly a year ago today.
More than four months have now passed since the Secretary of State began his review of the planning application and we are still waiting for his decision as to whether or not he will 'call in' the application. Moreover, we have no clear indication as to when he will make his decision. If he decides to 'call in' the application, this would result in a Public Inquiry which would re-examine the pros and cons of the application. If he decides not to do so, this could result in a further legal challenge by SSE. Either route would result in a further period of uncertainty as to the final outcome.
Quite apart from the above SSE still has an outstanding Judicial Review application against the Secretary of State for Transport (Chris Grayling) over his decision of 28 June 2018 to allow the Stansted Airport planning application to be determined locally by UDC. This case was originally scheduled for a two-day High Court hearing last month but has been 'stayed' by the Judge to await the decision of the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, referred to above. We are due to provide the Judge with an update on 29 March.
SSE's position - in summary - is that if the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government decides to call in the Stansted Airport planning application, there will be no need for us to continue with our High Court action against his colleague, the Secretary of State for Transport. If, however, the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government decides not to call in the planning application, we will need to consider whether to extend our action to include both Secretaries of State, and possibly also UDC.
Stansted Compensation Action Group
As a result of what many describe as 'derisory' compensation offers from Stansted Airport for the devaluation of their homes caused by airport expansion, a number of local residents have formed an action group with the initial aim of examining the feasibility of a legal challenge. The stated objectives are:
1. To muster sufficient supporters to spread the cost and risk of a referral to the Lands Tribunal under the Land Compensation Act 1973 Part 1.
2. Obtain counsel?s opinion on the merits of the case for Part 1 compensation claims against Stansted Airport.
3. Depending on the outcome of Objectives 1 & 2 above, instruct solicitors to refer eligible claims to the Lands Tribunal before 31 July 2019.
The Stansted Compensation Action Group is independent of SSE and any local resident dissatisfied with the level of compensation being offered by Stansted Airport, who wishes to get in touch with the Action Group, should do so by email to firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible.
SSE Campaign Team
19 March 2019
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