Report discredits Lewin’s claims over Kirk Michael land swap

Tynwald buildings, Douglas

Tynwald buildings, Douglas

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Tynwald should no longer give credence to any proposition made by Charles ‘Buster’ Lewin.

That’s one recommendation of the second report by a select committee set up to examine the Kirk Michael Land Swap Agreement.

The committee agreed to continue its inquiry after new evidence came to light from the former Heritage Homes employee. Mr Lewin left his prison cell to give evidence before the inquiry.

The report states: ‘What have we learned from this? On the substantive issues raised by the Kirk Michael land swap agreement: nothing. We have found every one of Mr Lewin’s allegations to be unfounded.

‘If there is one lesson to be learned from this experience, it is that an intervention by Charles “Buster” Lewin is capable of creating a large amount of work without generating any benefit to the public.’ The committee also recommends that when the agreement ‘is of historic interest only’ the Department of Education and Children publish the agreement in full and all associated valuations provided by the Government valuer during the negotiations.

Under the deal, the DEC was to have conveyed part of Michael School’s corner field to afford access to a new housing development and in return received a couple of acres of land to the rear of the school.

Heritage Homes said it had secured alternative access via Lhergy Vreck, prompting then education minister Eddie Teare to tell Tynwald it was a done deal and his department might as well take advantage and agree the land exchange.

Mr Lewin claimed the developer knew Lhergy Vreck was not an option due to issues over traffic safety and access rights.

The land swap never happened as the plan for 95 homes was refused by the Council of Ministers following an inspector’s recommendation.

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