BBOWT’s loses legal challenge against the Government over the Expressway,
BBOWT made the announcement on 10 July. Matthew Stanton, Head of Planning, Policy and Advocacy said:
This could spell disaster for the environment. It seems no lessons have been learned from HS2. The government is riding roughshod over environmental law.
BBOWT is not giving up and is taking legal advice about appealing the High Court’s decision.
More on the story here.
A new campaigning group – and some very good news.
BEAG has been contacted by a new campaigning group set up to challenge the expressway and arc – the Marsh Gibbon Action Group – and on Monday 15 July, we attended their open meeting at their village hall. The hall was absolutely packed, and the organisers estimate that there were around 300 people in attendance.
Professor David Rogers and Olivia Field from the No Expressway Group gave excellent presentations about the possible routes and locations for the expressway (a link motorway) and the likely locations for the one million houses proposed, as well as on the secrecy around the consultation process so far. At one point, Professor Rogers asked the crowd whether anyone knew the names of the stakeholders Highways England have selected to represent us. Not one hand went up.
However, on a very positive note, we learned during the meeting that Aylesbury Vale District Council and Bucks County Council are not in favour of the scheme, and – in contrast to Milton Keynes and Oxfordshire County Councils – have both refused to sign a non-disclosure agreement. This is very good news. Since then, BEAG has also learned that Vale of the White Horse District Council also opposes the scheme, and on Monday, Buckingham Town Council declared a climate emergency. This is really encouraging.
During AVDC’s Question Time in a council meeting last night, Cllr Ben Everitt questions the economic case for the expressway and “arc“, and expresses deep concern about the impacts on wildlife and the environment. Cllr Angela Macpherson (the council leader) also confirmed that AVDC will not be signing a non-disclosure agreement, explaining her reasoning and her misgivings about the expressway scheme. You can watch a video of the proceeding here (Question Time starts about 22 minutes in).
This is a very good time to contact your local representatives to ask them to oppose the scheme.
BEAG will contact you again soon with a list of other contacts and suggested actions.