East Riding councillor and housing developer says he will challenge suspension from Conservative Party 'very strongly'

East Riding councillor and housing developer Paul Lisseter has been suspended from the Conservative Party.

Coun Paul Lisseter

A source alleged he “sided” with another developer Gladman Developments, who recently won their appeal to build hundreds more homes in Pocklington, which he strongly denies.

The Government Inspector’s decision last week to overturn a unanimous vote by planning committee members to refuse plans for 380 homes off The Balk provoked an angry response from ward councillors.

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Coun Lisseter said the first he knew of the suspension by the East Yorkshire Constituency Conservative Association was from a phone call from a colleague on Wednesday and he was “rather surprised” as he was unaware of any complaint. He said he'd not been given any explanation about why he had been suspended.

The East Wolds and Coastal councillor, who runs Williamsfield Developments, made a statement to the public inquiry on the Pocklington scheme, as an interested party, and raised issues including the East Riding’s lack of a five-year supply of housing land.

But he said he never worked with Gladman, and his evidence was separate: “We had different numbers, different assessments and raised different issues.”

Coun Lisseter said he would challenge the suspension “very strongly” and he was concerned at whether councillors could now “impartially” decide on an application he has made to build 67 homes in Hutton Cranswick.

Earlier this month he spoke of his concern over the East Riding's ability to build 1,000 new affordable homes in five years after a "catastrophic failure" to meet current targets.

Chairman of the East Yorkshire Conservative Association Coun Felicity Temple confirmed the temporary suspension. She declined to give reasons, saying they were “following guidelines”.

She said: "He has been temporarily suspended from the Conservative Party by the Association and as such is no longer a member of the Conservative Party in the interim."

Deputy council leader Coun Mike Stathers said there had been an "outcry" since the appeal decision. The council had previously successful resisted "speculative" schemes by Gladman.

He said: "We are astonished this decision went against us and we have urged our planning team to press our legal team to find a way of challenging the inquiry decision."