Scheme for homes and businesses in Newry to go ahead

The High Court in Belfast
The High Court in Belfast

A challenge to the granting of planning permission for a major development on the outskirts of Newry was dismissed in the High Court on Friday.

Last year Environment Minister Mark H Durkan gave the green light for planning permission for the multi-million pound Carnbane Way scheme.

The proposal included a mix of industrial and business units as well as 14 homes, a coffee shop and a retail store.

After planning permission was granted in May 2014, Newry Chamber of Commerce and Trade launched a High Court bid to have the planning decision quashed on the grounds that the planning service at the Department of the Environment (DoE) failed to properly access the impact such a development would have on both the environment and Newry city centre.

A judge dismissed the challenge, Mr Justice Treacy set out the legal principles governing the role of planners and the role of the courts in planning cases – saying that the role of the court in such cases is limited to reviewing the legality of the decision-making process.

The application to challenge the planning permission, which was mounted by Newry Chamber of Commerce and Trade, originally submitted seven grounds of appeal, of which six were pursued in court (including failure to comply with habitat and environmental rules).

Mr Justice Treacy held the view that none of the grounds of challenge had been established. As he dismissed the case, one of the developers clenches his fist in the public gallery and said “yes.”

Speaking following the dismissal, developers Laurence and Eamon Breen said: “We are keen to get started as soon as possible on the site which will soon accommodate up to 350 construction jobs and then create 400 permanent part-time and full-time positions.”