Battle Lost For Ely Common But Not The War

MANY readers have probably heard that Cambridgeshire County Council has recently rejected our application to give Ely Common the protection afforded by an official designation as a Village Green. They did this on the basis of the inspector s finding - a

MANY readers have probably heard that Cambridgeshire County Council has recently rejected our application to give Ely Common the protection afforded by an official designation as a Village Green.

They did this on the basis of the inspector's finding - after the public inquiry - that because members of the public did not physically throw themselves in front of tractors and haybalers when they were on the common we had in some bizarre way failed to stand up for our rights - and therefore our rights did not exist. But this may not be the end of the story. As our local MP Jim Paice has pointed out to us and the council, not only is the decision "extremely odd", but it would have been best if the council had delayed making its decision, because the test case upon which the inspector's ruling was based is yet to be heard on a petition before the House of Lords. If the Lords overturn the case, where are we then?

Whatever the outcome of this case we would like to go on the record in thanking all those - like Mr Paice - who have taken the time to support the campaign to win Village Green status for Ely Common. We may well have lost the battle. But there is still a chance the Law Lords will prove, at the very last minute, that the law isn't always an ass.

FRANK RICHARDS


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Local Campaigners for the Protection of Rural Ely (LCPRE)

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