Monday, 5 October 2015

Are AI’s plans unravelling?

As part of its Regulation 22 request, DCC asked Aggregate Industries:
Please can the Applicant clarify the legal query over land ownership sent to them on 9th July 2015. Reason: To ensure that the proposal can be implemented in the manner proposed in the application
The land in question is the northern field, the proposed access to the site. It is owned by a third party. AI has now replied, and has said:
This matter is being addressed directly between the applicant and the surface land owner. The applicant contends that it has necessary rights over the surface to implement the proposals as presented 8.78
Which is interesting, because, since the initial request on 13 May, AI has been unable to supply any evidence that it has the necessary rights over the surface, despite repeated requests.

In fact, on 25 June, DCC was advised by solicitors that:
The area of land in question, as owned by our clients has been designated as land suitable for use as a transportation hub and we confirm that Aggregate Industries have not supplied evidence of their right to use that land for those purposes. Our clients therefore wish to object on the basis that their land will be used for purposes beyond the extent of any usage rights that Aggregate Industries have.
DCC has allocated Straitgate Farm as a Specific Site in its draft Minerals Plan. But a Specific Site is:
where viable resources are known to exist, landowners are supportive of minerals development and the proposal is likely to be acceptable in planning terms.
Unfortunately for both AI and DCC, this landowner is NOT supportive.