UK Coal appeal paves way for Leadgate opencast mine

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Plans for a new opencast mine in County Durham have been revived following a legal challenge.

UK Coal had applied for permission to extract 556,000 tonnes of coal from the site near Leadgate, but this was rejected by the county council in 2011.

An appeal by the company has now been upheld at the High Court in London, and the plans will go back to a planning inspector at a public inquiry.

Anti-mine campaigners said UK Coal had not listened to the local community.

Timothy Corner QC, appearing for UK Coal, said the decision was "unreasonable and perverse" and a misunderstanding of government planning guidance.

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