Ordeal by pollution - the case of the Peking Garden

Two small pieces of history have been made by a Devon restaurateur who has won exemption from paying poll tax and business rates on pollution grounds. The decisions have wider implications, in establishing that there can be legitimate grounds for abatement of local taxes where an enforcing authority is shown to have contributed to a pollution problem by its failure to apply planning or pollution laws. The case has also highlighted the extraordinary ordeal which it is possible for innocent individuals to suffer due to a combination of official inertia, secrecy, refusal to admit errors and plain harrassment.

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