Thursday, 26 March 2009

NI judge loses Cork planning appeal

A NORTHERN Ireland judge, who was involved in a successful legal challenge to the requirement for senior Northern barristers to take an oath to serve the British queen, has lost a High Court case to overturn permission for a development of three houses allegedly adjacent to his holiday home in west Cork.

In 1999, Seamus Treacy, then a barrister, won a landmark legal action against having to promise to “well and truly serve Queen Elizabeth II”. He and another barrister claimed the declaration discriminated against them as nationalists and was an affront to their political sensibilities.

Mr Treacy, who was appointed a High Court judge in Northern Ireland in 2007, brought High Court proceedings here challenging a 2006 decision by Cork County Council to grant planning permission for a development of three houses at Colla, Schull.

His proceedings were brought against Cork County Council and the Minister for the Environment. The proposed developers, Kieran Coughlan and Claire Riordan, were notice parties.

Mr Coughlan and Ms Riordan lodged their planning application for their site at Colla on March 16th, 2006, and secured permission on July 4th, 2006. They proposed constructing three dwellings and related waste water treatment units.

In his judgment yesterday, Mr Justice John Hedigan ruled the high point of Mr Treacy’s claimed interest was that his holiday home was located nearby, but it was clear the development was below and out of sight of the applicant’s property.

Irish Times

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