Watford health campus: 'significant' allotment case will be heard before high court summer recess (From Watford Observer)
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Watford health campus: 'significant' allotment case will be heard before high court summer recess
The high court case over the fate of West Watford allotments will be heard before July after being designated as "significant".
Campaigners trying to save the Farm Terrace Allotments have been told their judicial review case will be heard before the summer recess at the Queen's Bench Division.
The case is challenging the Government’s decision to grant permission for the allotments to be built over as part of the health campus project.
Sara Jane Trebar, from the Farm Terrace Community Association, said: "It is full steam ahead. They have made it a significant case, so they are taking it seriously due to the wider implications as it is a test case."
This is the second time the association has launched a legal challenge against the decision by local government minister, Eric Pickles, to allow the allotments to be used in the health campus.
Mr Pickles reversed the initial permission he granted to Watford Borough Council, which he made in May, after the first challenge. However he granted permission for a second time in December.
The health campus project aims to redevelop the land behind Vicarage Road with new 700 new homes, new businesses, leisure areas, and space for new hospital facilities.
The council said it needs to use the allotment land, which was protected in previous versions of the scheme, to make the health campus financially viable.
Last week Watford’s elected mayor, Dorothy Thornhill, said work on the health campus was continuing despite the looming court battle.
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