Up to 80 schems involved in High Court legal battle will not be restarted

Local councils have expressed their “bitter disappointment” at the government’s decision not to revive up to 80 cancelled BSF school projects involved in a High Court legal battle earlier this year.

Education secretary Michael Gove yesterday announced the government will not restart the schemes involved in the judicial review case, which was brought by councils Waltham Forest, Luton, Nottingham, Sandwell, Kent and Newham in Februrary.

Gove said the government will cover the contractural liabilities of the six councils but said the schemes would not be reinstated.

A spokesperson for Nottingham city council said: “The council is bitterly disappointed to learn that the Secretary of State for Education is minded not to fund any of Nottingham’s BSF projects which were the subject of a judicial review earlier this year.

“Over the past 12 months the council has worked tirelessly to do everything within its power to over turn the decision to stop the £79m of funding and will be making further representation before the Secretary of State makes his final decision.

The council understands that the Secretary of State is not minded to return funding to any of the local authorities which took the brave decision to take legal action against the decision, this suggests that the five month consultation process has been a waste of time and effort.

Councillor David Mellen, Nottingham city council’s portfolio holder for children’s services, said: “What the Secretary of State is minded to do does not appear to be in the spirit of the judgment in February and I am extremely disheartened that despite our best efforts, it looks highly unlikely that the funding previously agreed will be returned to us.