Here’s some great news.
Last week, as we were preparing for a resumption of the final Trial Hearing on the motocross appeal, Drywound Pty Ltd's solicitor filed an application with the court to be taken off the record as its solicitor because he (and the barristers) were owed a considerable amount of money and the developer had not been returning his calls or emails for over a month (this was accompanied by a 63 page affidavit detailing the Drywound's debts to its lawyers and experts - see post here).
Late on Friday Colby Steer (sole Director of Drywound Pty Ltd) sent the parties to the appeal copies of a “letter of demand” that he had sent to the Council for payment of $501,057 which he claimed to have spent on legal and professional costs, arguing that the Council had intially expressed “tremendous support and encouragement” at the initial meeting in 2014, but had been putting difficulties in his way since then.
The tone and content of his letter suggest that he has not adequately understood the nature of the Development Application or Planning and Environment Court Appeal processes. However, in fairness, it is also quite possibly a factor contributing to his current problems that, as an "outsider" in the Lockyer Valley, he might not have recognised in time that any support, encouragement and assurances he had received from the then Mayor of the LVR Council would not necessarily outlast his untimely demise.
On the morning of Monday 23rd of January Mr Steer was in the Planning and Environment Court (self-represented) when it met to resume the Trial Hearing. He advised the Judge that he wanted to withdraw from the Appeal and had no intention of pursuing the Trial Hearing. On hearing this, the Judge dismissed his Appeal against the Council’s decision to refuse the application for a material change of use to allow the establishment of a motocross facility on the land in Adare Road.
The Council’s decision to refuse the Development Application stands.
The voices of the 232 objecting submitters to the Development Application have prevailed.
This was always an inappropriate development for the proposed location, and that would have been recognised in the Trail Hearing had it gone ahead. Drywound's withdrawal has saved the community from yet more unnecessary expense in fighting an appeal that should not have been launched in the first place.