In a further setback to the proposed Crystal Palace multiplex development, the Court of Appeal today granted leave to appeal to a local resident who is challenging the legality of Bromley’s grant of planning permission.

Diane Barker, a single Mum from Anerley, south London, will now get a full 3-judge hearing in the Court of Appeal. Her case for judicial review is that Bromley ought to have required developer London & Regional Properties Ltd to carry out a full Environment Impact Assessment as required by European Directive. Ms Barker lost in the High Court last year and her written application for leave to appeal was turned down last month. Today, after two-hours argument by her counsel Mr Robert McCracken QC, Lord Justice Dyson reversed that refusal and accepted that there were “very important matters” to be decided by the Court of Appeal. The two or three day hearing will probably be held in March.

The case has wide implications for planning law in England. And in parallel proceedings the UK government is currently considering a reply to a formal European Commission letter complaining that Bromley’s failure to require an EIA was in breach of the relevant European Directive, binding in UK law.

Ms Barker failed however to extend the injunction she had obtained to stop Bromley felling trees on the Crystal Palace wooded ridge. Lord Justice Dyson ruled that Bromley, as the freeholder of the site who had granted the necessary permissions, was entitled to fell the trees in advance of the nesting season which begins March 1.

Fred Emery CPC spokesman stated:

“Although the Crystal Palace Campaign has no part in Ms Barker’s action, this is marvellous news for her, and the Court of Appeal’s ruling is of great significance for upholding European law as the law of the land. We are however dismayed that the injunction on tree felling has been lifted since Bromley are not to be trusted. If they vandalise the site, knowing that both the Court of Appeal and the European Commission could decide to halt the multiplex development, it would be an environmental outrage.”

Press Officer: Fred Emery 020 8761 0076 Mobile: 0794 117 2023
All correspondence to: Hon Secretary, 33 HogarthCourt, Fountain Drive, London SE19 1UY
E-mail: fred@syre.demon.co.uk Website: www.crystal.dircon.co.uk

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8/02/01 Last updated 8/02/01