High Court considering campaigners concerns over felling of historic woodland
PUBLISHED: 16:40 09 September 2020 | UPDATED: 16:40 09 September 2020
A High Court hearing has taken place to consider the future of an area of historic Suffolk woodland.
The future of Coronation Wood near Sizewell is under discussion after East Suffolk Council gave permission for the wood to be chopped down as part of the preparations to build a new twin reactor nuclear power station.
A legal challenge against the council’s decision has been brought by Together Against Sizewell C (TASC) campaigner Joan Girling.
If given the go-ahead buildings currently used to run the existing Sizewell B nuclear site could be moved to the wood ahead of the construction of Sizewell C.
The buildings in question include the Sizewell B visitor centre, as well as training centres and their associated car parks.
Protestors have argued in the past that the felling of the trees will cause untold damage to an historic area of woodland, where some trees are around 100 years old.
They say that East Suffolk Council should not have given permission for the felling of the woodland ahead of permission being granted for the construction of Sizewell C.
A decision on whether the construction of Sizewell C itself is given the go-ahead is currently being discussed with a decision not expected until next year.
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A virtual hearing was held in June to consider a bid for a judicial review on the Sizewell B buildings, which was successful.
Ms Girling’s case was granted the review after differences in opinion were highlighted over whether the ecological advice for environmental plans on the site was still up to date.
EDF has always maintained that it will be planting more trees elsewhere and has previously raised concerns about the quality of the existing trees which reside within the Coronation Wood site.
The case was heard in the High Court on Tuesday but it will take some time for an outcome to be reached.
No date for the verdict has yet been announced.
A spokesman for TASC said: “We hope that the court will agree with our point of view.”
A spokesman for East Suffolk Council said: “East Suffolk Council defended the decision made by its Planning Committee at the High Court and will await the outcome in due course.”
EDF declined to comment further on the case at this time.
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