Council steps up appeal against lorries decision

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A CONTROVERSIAL decision to allow lorries back into a busy high street will be fought ‘all the way’, a council has said.

Brandon town councillors and residents are furious about a decision by Breckland Council to allow vehicles owned by David Watson Transport Ltd to travel through High Street.

Up to 15 of the firm’s vehicles will now be able to pass through the town after a Section 106 agreement prohibiting their passage was lifted on January 5.

Now Brandon councillors have written to the Local Government Ombudsman to explore contesting the decision.

At a meeting of the town council on Wednesday, Cllr Stephen Edwards, chairman of Brandon Town Council, said: “Breckland have not done the job that they should have done and they have definitely broken their own protocols.”

The town council has also urged Matthew Hancock, MP for West Suffolk, and Elizabeth Truss, MP for South West Norfolk, to offer support.

Councillors, and town clerk Christine Mason, say they were not told when the decision would be made, meaning they were unable to make representations in opposition.

That was despite numerous attempts to find out the date of the meeting, with Breckland telling Ms Mason that they would inform her of when it would be held.

The Local Government Ombudsman, an independent body, cannot force Breckland to change its decision, but they may recommend that the decision is reviewed.

Victor Lukaniuk, a Brandon resident, told the meeting: “If the authorities in Norfolk are hell bent on pulverising this high street, they are doing a damn good job of it.”

A spokesman for Breckland said the committee which made the decision was aware of the issues raised by objectors.

He said: “As it is clear that all the areas of concern raised by objectors have been fully aired and considered by the committee, Breckland will not reconsider this application.

“This is in line with Breckland’s general policy of not putting a matter back to committee unless there are significcant and pertinent facts which were not put to the committee at the first instance, or where facts given to the committee turned out to be incorrect.”