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Campaigners fail in final legal challenge to oppose destruction of historic wood

PUBLISHED: 07:30 19 November 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

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A long-running dispute over the moving of buildings associated with Sizewell B onto an historic woodland has ended, after campaigners lost their final legal challenge.

Joan Girling brought the action on behalf of TASC Picture:JOAN GIRLINGJoan Girling brought the action on behalf of TASC Picture:JOAN GIRLING

Campaigner Joan Girling and the Together Against Sizewell C group had opposed the moving of some structures associated with the current power station to the woodland, known as Coronation Wood, ahead of the proposed construction of Sizewell C.

The buildings include the Sizewell B visitor centre, as well as training centres and their associated car parks.

TASC has always argued that East Suffolk Council’s approval of the plans was premature, given that the construction of Sizewell C has not yet been given the go-ahead.

The group recently took their fight to the High Court after they were granted a judicial review following concerns about some of the ecological plans for the site.

Buildings associated with Sizewell B will be moved to a woodland   Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNBuildings associated with Sizewell B will be moved to a woodland Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

However, the judge found in favour of East Suffolk Council and now a final legal attempt to oppose the plans, this time through the Court of Appeal, has also failed.

The news came only days after EDF submitted their full planting plans for the site to East Suffolk Council, in line with a condition of the original planning permission.

MORE: EDF reveals further details of plans to replace historic Coronation Wood as part of Sizewell C development

David Ritchie welcomed the decision  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNDavid Ritchie welcomed the decision Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

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Joan Girling who brought the case to court, said: “It is totally premature to allow the felling of the wood. Sizewell C may never get permission and a 100 year old wood cannot be replaced.

“Due to its removal there will be a major loss of visual screening of the nuclear industrial complex causing increased noise and light pollution, totally ignoring the site’s status as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

“EDF is not concerned in any way, shape or form for the well being of the ecology of the area, nor that of locals who are deeply upset by their plans.”

EDF have previously said that the quality of the woodland in question was poor and that more trees would be planted elsewhere.

David Ritchie, East Suffolk cabinet member for planning and coastal management, said: “ESC welcomes the decision not to allow the claimant to pursue this case further.

“The High Court correctly adjudicated that the decision made by the council, in granting planning permission, was lawful and vindicated the thorough assessment the council took in reaching this decision.”

MORE: Battle to save century-old woodland taken to Court of Appeal


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