Larkfleet fails with challenge to Uppingham Neighbourhood Plan

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A housing firm has failed in its legal challenge to a document setting out where building should take place in Uppingham.

Bourne-based Larkfleet Homes had hoped a High Court judge would send Uppingham’s Neighbourhood Plan back to the drawing board.

But Mr Justice Andrew Collins rejected the challenge on Monday.

The Neighbourhood Plan was drawn up by a team on behalf of Uppingham Town Council under the Localism Act 2011. It was then put to a referendum by Rutland County Council, with a 92 per cent approval rate. The document supports the construction of 170 new homes in Uppingham in the period up to 2026.

Lawyers for Larkfleet argued in the High Court last month that the matter should never have been put to the vote. They effectively asked the judge to quash the referendum result - a decision which could have forced the town council to take a second look at the plan.

But lawyers for the county council argued the challenge had been brought by an aggrieved developer seeking to promote its own site off Ayston Road, which was not included in the plan..

The council’s lawyer Martin Carter told the court in written argument: “The claim is, in effect, a commercial objection seeking on unmeritorious and technical grounds to disrupt the community neighbourhood planning process which has now received the support of 92 per cent of those voting through the democratic process of a referendum.”

Mr Justice Andrew Collins dismissed Larkfleet’s challenge in a complex 4,500-word written judgement.