York & North Yorkshire

Clifford's Tower visitor centre legal review granted

Artist's impression of visitor centre at base of Clifford's Tower Image copyright English Heritage
Image caption The visitor centre would be for ticketing and providing information about the history of the 13th Century building

A judicial review looking into a council's decision to approve plans for a visitor centre at the foot of York's Clifford's Tower has been granted.

City of York Council approved English Heritage's £2m plan in October.

However, Councillor John Hayes, who launched the legal challenge, believes the decision to approve the development was "deeply flawed".

A council spokesperson said it was "entirely confident" it had followed "due process at all stages".

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Image copyright Edward McMaihin
Image caption The stone tower was built in the 1250s to replace an earlier wooden structure

Mr Hayes said: "I made the application as a local resident. I am not the ward councillor for the Guildhall Ward where Clifford's Tower stands.

"However, I live nearby and I, along with many other people in York, want to retain the mound in its simple medieval form that makes it such an iconic landmark."

When Mr Hayes first announced his plan to seek a review of the decision a council spokesman said: "We are entirely confident we have followed due process at all stages of the application."

A judicial review is a type of court proceeding in which a judge reviews the lawfulness of a decision or action made by a public body.

A spokesperson for English Heritage said: "English Heritage was pleased to have received planning permission from City of York Council, and remains committed to improving the quality of visits to Clifford's Tower.

"We now await the High Court's decision on the judicial review."

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