Axminster homes plan still facing legal challenge

Save Our Parkland group takes up the cudgels after town council drops Cloakham court action

ENVIRONMENT campaigners have taken over the legal challenge to the building of up to 400 homes on a greenfield site at Axminster.

The Save Our Parkland group stepped in after town councillors abandoned their case against the planning authority for approving the Cloakham Lawns development.

They pulled out after a barrister warned them they did not have a cast-iron case.

But the parkland group say they are confident a judicial review into East Devon District Council decision to allow development of the Axminster Carpets-owned site will rule in their favour.

Leader Fred Wells told The Herald they had been prepared for the town council’s pull out and had already advised the district council of their own pending legal action.

He continued: “It is particularly disappointing that the town council appear to not be able to give any substantive support to the required action .

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“If Save Our Parkland is to proceed with the action it will now have to act in isolation.

“This is unfortunate as, although the town council has objected strongly to EDDC concerning the proposed development, and the majority of the town, when consulted, are opposed to it, an action in the High Court which included the town council would have been preferred.

“Nevertheless, our own specialist legal team comprising a locally based planning consultant, a specialist London firm of solicitors and a barrister from Matrix Chambers are confident of a positive result in a Judicial Review and are in the process of finalising the necessary paperwork.

“This process will require some more funding and we seek assistance through financial donations from all concerned members of the public.

“As it is vitally important to the townspeople of Axminster that we preserve our last remaining parkland and that we fight for development on the East side of Axminster to help facilitate a North /South relief road to ease our traffic problems we ask those people who have not already done so to give generously.

“If the Cloakham development goes ahead we believe there will be no chance of a relief road for the town for another generation.”

The Save Our Parkland appeal address is : c/o Nat. West Bank, Victoria Place, Axminster, EX13 5AR. Bank Account 72553022 Sort Code 51-61-23. Cheques should be made to “Save our Parkland Appeal Ltd”.