An energy company refused planning permission for a controversial wind farm proposal in Northamptonshire has failed in a fresh bid to revive the scheme at the Court of Appeal.
Broadview Energy last year asked the High Court to overturn the refusal of consent for the proposed wind farm between the villages of Helmdon and Greatworth and order a reconsideration of its application.
Broadview had alleged that the decision to refuse its planning appeal was made by communities minister Kris Hopkins after "private meetings" with local MP Andrea Leadsom, who led the fight to block the five turbine wind farm at Spring Farm Ridge.
But Mr Justice Cranston rejected the company’s claim that the minister who turned down the plan was guilty of bias. Now, an Appeal Court judge has upheld that decision.
Yesterday, Lord Justice Longmore warned ministers that they simply must not listen to lobbyists, including MPs, when making controversial planning decisions.
Lord Justice Longmore said that, in such cases, it was "incumbent" on ministers to tell lobbyists, including MPs, "that they cannot listen to them".
But the judge said that Hopkins' "technical breach" had in fact made no difference to the ultimate decision to block the windfarm.
Broadview's appeal was dismissed.
Broadview Energy Developments Limited v The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government & Ors. Case Number: C1/2015/2642