Word has reached the Northern Herald news desk that the Common Land Town and Village Green Committee has rejected Mr Ahmed Khan’s application to have certain coastal areas and municipal parks classified as village green areas, thereby protecting them from being sold or built on. The reasons for the rejection are not yet known.
Whilst the decision is inherently flawed, it is not unexpected. Anybody who was in attendance at yesterdays meeting could see that the Committee was channelling its debate in only one direction, and today this observation was confirmed.
So, is it the end this particular application. Not exactly and here’s why.
1) The prospect of a full judicial review re the committee’s proceedings.
2) A procedural review of the legal advice given to Councillor’s on the day by Council officials.
3) Failure to facilitate a political balance in the Committee structure.
4) Human rights abuses in that Mr Khan was not allowed to freely address issues raised by the Council and resubmit his application as specified by government legislation that covers this issue.
5) Despite the Committees rejection of Mr Khan’s application, it does not stop other people from submitting similar requests.
Anybody who has witnessed Mr Khan’s tenacity over the last two years will also realize that he will not let this matter drop. I would suspect that his legal response is already formulated and ready to go.
If I were a member of this Committee or a council employee with an involvement with the Committee, I would be extremely perturbed by these events. Any judicial review will reveal flaws in the Council’s handling of the matter, its incompetence in the interpretation of the law, and more importantly, any plans or ideas it has for the land in question. With the involvement of a judge, with holding information will not be possible.