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The Premier Inn, the Council’s costs and me

by Jo Hayes on 27 October, 2014

The leitmotiv of the whole Premier Inn saga has been misinformation. It all began with Whitbread getting planning permission for a site in St Peter’s Street, Colchester, which many consider to be the wrong place, on the back of misinformation about the availability of an alternative hotel site in Queen Street, not far away, which […]

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My application for permission to seek judicial review of the planning consent granted to Whitbread for a budget hotel in St Peter’s Street, Colchester, was heard this morning. The Lord Justice accepted the important principle that if the Planning Committee was under a mistake, whether induced intentionally or inadvertently, as to a material consideration then […]

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Premier Inn planning permission: update

by Jo Hayes on 31 March, 2014

My challenge to the planning permission for a Premier Inn hotel in St Peter’s Street, Colchester, approved on 27th September 2012 by Colchester Borough Council’s Planning Committee, comes up for hearing this week. It previously came before the Administrative Court on 25th July 2013. Whitbread’s planning application was supported by a planning statement which stated […]

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Jumbo saved from insensitive redevelopment

by Jo Hayes on 10 November, 2013

On 31st October I, with Castle Ward colleague Cllr Nick Barlow and Balkerne Tower Trust chairman Brian Light, urged Colchester’s Planning Committee to refuse the owner’s planning and listed building applications for permission to fill in Jumbo Water Tower’s legs, insert floors and convert most of the space within into offices and flats. After an […]

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Thank you!

by Jo Hayes on 8 May, 2010

A big thank you to each and every elector in Lexden who voted Lib Dem in the election of 6 May! The numbers of votes cast in Lexden Ward for the Borough Council candidates were: Lib Dem (me) 1,084; Conservative 1,729; Green 132; Labour 168. It has been an exhausting but exciting campaign, and the […]

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172 Lexden Road update

by Jo Hayes on 25 April, 2010

I have been asked by a number of residents for an update on 172 Lexden Road, the house in Lexden’s Conservation Area that is under threat of demolition. As previously reported in Focus, the Secretary of State’s Listing Review Officer sent the file back to English Heritage for a reassessment in the light of evidence […]

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Condolences to the people of Poland

by Jo Hayes on 13 April, 2010

My condolences to all Poles here and abroad for the loss of Poland’s president and many of its brightest political and military talent in last weekend’s plane crash, which is a terrible blow.

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Labservative campaign launch!

by Jo Hayes on 7 April, 2010

I have been wondering where the money came from to fund the huge Conservative posters that have appeared on various hoardings around Colchester. Might Central Office and wealthy non-dom donors have anything to do with it? Anyway, I’d like to respond by displaying this splendid poster which gets the point rather better than the ones […]

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Parsons Hill: planning battleground

by Jo Hayes on 7 April, 2010

Here I am at 4 Parsons Hill, Lexden. There can be few in the area who have not heard of the proposal, rightly rejected by the Planning Committee in my opinion, to build – and excavate – nine flats with underground parking here. It is within Prettygate ward boundary, but I think it affects Lexden […]

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Transition Lexden?

by Jo Hayes on 27 February, 2010

How should our community respond to the twin challenges and opportunities of peak oil and climate change? That is the question that the Transition Towns movement is asking. People are responding to it in places up and down the country by setting up groups for the purpose of seeking solutions to the problem: “For all […]

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