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Parish Council Goes Ahead with Judicial Review of Lakes Decision

In accordance with its resolution of 29th February, Radley Parish Council has now submitted an application to the High Court to undertake a Judicial Review of the decision of Oxfordshire County Council on 14 January 2008 not to register land around Thrupp and Bullfield Lakes as a Town Green. The application was submitted on 1st April 2008, within the 3 month deadline. The action follows a ballot of households in the parish, which returned an overwhelming 88% vote in favour of support for saving the Lakes and 80% in favour of proceeding with the judicial review.

 

Since then, several other local councils have added their support to the campaign. These include Oxford City Council, who passed a resolution in support of the action on the 18th February; the Vale of White Horse District Council; Abingdon Town Council; Kennington Parish Council and Sunningwell Parish Council. Several councils have already pledged financial support, and others have promised to consider giving financial support in the future.

 
Chairman of Radley Parish Council, Jenny Standen said
 

The Parish Council has not taken this step lightly and would really like to be able to spend the money in better ways. However RWE npower’s refusal to back up their recent announcement that they do not need Thrupp Lake just yet with any assurances, or even a statement of intent, that they will not harm or destroy the lakes sometime in the future left us with very little choice but to proceed with this action. However the Parish Council recognises that npower may need more time before they can say they are confident that they will never need Thrupp Lake in the future, which is why we have applied for a Stay of Proceedings to allow time for further negotiations with the Power Station, and with the other landowners, about securing the future of these beautiful lakes and beginning a planned restoration of the area. For a start, we would like to see some remediation of the damage inflicted last year by clearance work, and, in the longer term, proper restoration of the wider Radley Lakes area which has suffered the consequences of 25 years of inadequately controlled ash dumping. This is Greenbelt land on the edge of Abingdon and in the Thames floodplain. Yet a long series of poor planning decisions, culminating with the one made in July 2007 permitting RWE npower to dump ash into Thrupp Lake, the oldest and largest of the surviving Radley Lakes, has allowed much of this beautiful area to be desecrated and turned into an industrial waste site. It is high time things were put right.

The Parish Council is most gratified by the strong support being given to the Campaign by other local councils. The Parish Council is also grateful to Save Radley Lakes for continuing their fund raising campaign and to members of the community in general for their hard work and generosity.

The ball is now in npower’s court. At the present time we would like their assurance that they are doing everything they can to save Thrupp Lake for posterity, by exploring all possible alternative ash disposal strategies, and, as a mark of goodwill, they should start remedial work without delay. We feel that npower has a long way to go to earn the respect that they once enjoyed in this community. The sooner they start, the better for us all.

In the meantime, the community would much prefer to be raising money to buy the lakes than paying for lawyers’ time.

 
The Parish Council is now seeking a dialogue with the Power Station and an exploratory meeting is being arranged for later this month.
 

Other links relevant to this posting                                

Fox FM (13 Jan 09)

Oxford Times, 11 August 2008

Herald, 11 August 2008

Oxford Mail, 11 August 2008

Oxford Mail, 22 April 2008

Save Radley Lakes

Permanent link to this article: http://www.radleyvillage.org.uk/parish-council-goes-ahead-with-judicial-review-of-lakes-decision/