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High Court set to hear case against Sizewell C preparations

PUBLISHED: 14:57 02 June 2020 | UPDATED: 14:57 02 June 2020

Substantial felling of Coronation Wood would take place to create space for new buildings at Sizewell B Picture: MIKE PAGE AERIAL PHOTO LIBRARY

Substantial felling of Coronation Wood would take place to create space for new buildings at Sizewell B Picture: MIKE PAGE AERIAL PHOTO LIBRARY

Archant

Campaigners seeking a second judicial review in their bid to stop the go-ahead to fell a century-old Suffolk woodland will be back in the High Court tomorrow.

TASC (Together Against Sizewell C) want a review of the decision by East Suffolk Council to allow Coronation Wood to be chopped down as part of preparations to build a new twin reactor nuclear power station.

But the group’s first bid for a judicial review was thrown out by the High Court.

Tomorrow, Wednesday, June 3, that decision will be reviewed by different judges – in a virtual court hearing held over Skype.

Lawyers Leigh Day, acting on behalf of TASC, submitted their legal arguments last week and these will be debated in court at 10.30am.

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Opponents claim the felling of the wood – planted in 1910 to mark the coronation of George V – is premature as the Sizewell C power station plans have not been approved by Government yet.

EDF – which submitted its plans for the £16billion power project last week – wants to create a new visitor centre which would also involve resiting large parking areas and moving other buildings as part of changes at Sizewell B and preparations for Sizewell C.

It says the work needs to be carried out to prevent delays to the construction of Sizewell C.

TASC though says the10-acre wood between Leiston and Sizewell is a wildlife haven for badgers, bats and many native and migratory birds – as well as a visual and noise barrier – and have pledged to “fight every inch of the way” to prevent it being lost.

Joan Girling, TASC secretary, has said: “The cards may be stacked in favour of the government but we will continue to make our case that the proposed felling of Coronation Wood is premature, unnecessary, and inappropriate, causing the loss of woodland and acidic grassland in an AONB and devastating the fragile wildlife and ecosystems particularly when it is not clear if or when SZC will achieve planning consent.”

Pete Wilkinson, TASC chairman, said: “The lack of an Environmental Impact Assessment, the importance of Coronation Wood and the premature nature of the EDF application could see the loss of a much loved wood for a project which may not see the light of day.

“There is still everything to play for. We will not stop fighting for our coast, our wildlife, our environment and the area of outstanding natural beauty which nourishes and sustains the community of East Suffolk.”


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