Well the last two weeks have been a bit of a whirlwind.
After CARE Suffolk, Bramford Parish Council, and Burstall Parish Council signed up to be a joint Rule 6 Party to the Enso Energy appeal (against Mid Suffolk’s refusal in February), Mid Suffolk held a meeting in an unusual closed door session (i.e. not open to the public) to discuss the appeal. The result of which is that Mid Suffolk decided not to defend the appeal. Leaving the community and Rule 6 Party to do so alone!
Trying to figure out exactly what this meant, where we now stood as a Rule 6 Party, and the limited options we had to choose from, Enso Energy were adamant they still wanted to pursue the Inquiry route. There are three procedures for an appeal – written representations, informal hearing, public inquiry. The inquiry procedure is the most in depth.
We spoke to a lot of different people, including CPRE Devon who went through a similar situation as us last year. Everyone said that the Inquiry route was over the top or excessive (some even so with the Council participating!). So after an emergency meeting all the feedback we had was unanimous – we withdrew as a Rule 6 Party, but it was on the understanding that we could still submit a written defence. The deadline for written comments had passed, but because of the circumstances the Inspector allowed us to submit one, but the deadline was… tight. We had 3 days to pull it together!
What procedure the appeal continues as now is up to the Inspector and Enso Energy. If it is via Written Representations we have put in our defence. If it is via Informal Hearing we can attend and may even be allowed to speak. If it is via Public Inquiry we can still attend and ask to speak, but we may not be able to cross-examine Enso Energy’s experts anymore (that was a benefit of being a Rule 6 Party). What ever way we are still allowed to participate and defend against the appeal, we will.
The main portion of the Joint Written Representation is below. The actual submission was accompanied by 25 additional documents as appendices. If you’d like the full suite of appendices please email us and we will send you a zip file – email@example.com.