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Winners, Losers And Litigants

Last week I wondered in this blog if the Government proposals for assessing what it chose to call housing need would provoke endless legal challenges. I was challenged myself, though mercifully not in the courts, by someone who pointed out there would be no danger of this as the consultation paper p...

Posted by Jon Reeds on 16 October 2017

Congestion, Capacity, Carbon, Confusion

Congestion, Capacity, Carbon are the priorities for national infrastructure. Or so the new National Infrastructure Commission report says. I think one could add another issue that needs to be addressed. Confusion. The Consultation on a National Infrastructure Assessment launched by the National Infr...

Posted by Jon Reeds on 13 October 2017

Bring On The Lawyers

Lawyer-led planning is probably not something anyone would want. But that could be the way we are heading. As our report this year demonstrated, Garden Towns and Garden Villages are neither towns nor villages. They tend to be low-density, car-dependent suburbs, unwanted by anyone except their develo...

Posted by Jon Reeds on 11 October 2017

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Des Collins warns on Redcar

Added on 26 September 2016

Solicitor Des Collins, who represented families who had had children with birth defects at Corby, has warned the lessons learned should be applied to any remediation of the disused steel works at Redcar.

Mr Collins, speaking to a BBC programme on the first anniversary of the SSI works closure, represented families who won damages after a court ruled in 2009 that dust from remediation of the Corby site was capable of having caused the defects.

Many commentators have since claimed the court ruled the dust had definitely caused the defects, but it merely judged that it was capable of having done so, a crucial difference.

Mr Collins now says the lessons learned at Corby need to be applied at Redcar, though there is currently no plan to clean up the 570ha site.

"What they didn&primet appreciate was that if the material was in the back of a lorry then it could disperse into the air," he told the programme.

No progress is possible on the site as three Thai banks have a claim on it over a 350 million pound loan to SSI.

The SSI Taskforce, chaired by Lord Heseltine, set up to help the area has published a progress report which shows how the 2,150 people who lost their jobs have been assisted.

"The closure of SSI was clearly an incredibly difficult time for Redcar and the wider Tees Valley, but today&primes report shows the real progress thats been made just one year later," he said.


"With a ground-breaking devolution deal and the new mayoral development corporation, the first ever of its kind outside of London, there is real cause for optimism for the region&primes economic future."

But there is currently no reclamation scheme in sight for the steelworks.

Taskforce

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