Bristol City Football Club have spoken of their “disappointment” and “frustration”, after it emerged it is likely a judicial review will take place over the council’s controversial Ashton Vale town green decision.
The Evening Post said today an application for a judicial review over Bristol City Council’s “split site” town green decision is expected to be made in the next few days.
Earlier this month, former Labour councillor Peter Crispin told Bristol24-7 a letter was sent by the Save Ashton Vale Environment Group (Save) to Bristol City Council’s chief executive.
The letter is the first phase in a judicial review procedure. The Save group are complaining about the council’s planning process and, therefore, must contact the council for a response. If no agreement with the Save group is found, then the group can apply to the courts for the review.
The group wants the legal review of Bristol City Council’s decision-making process which led to the compromise deal over the town green application.
Councillors on the Public Rights of Way and Greens (PROWG) committee voted six to two in favour of accepting a recommendation to split the site – with only the southern area kept as a town green. The decision paved the way for the football club to finally start work on their new stadium, which was approved by a planning committee in 2009.
This morning, the club released a statement saying: “Whilst the news of this letter being submitted so late into the three month appeal period is disappointing, the club remains confident any review will be rejected as it is felt the city council’s decision is a robust one and has taken into account all the evidence provided to it by both sides.
“We appreciate the frustration that will be felt by the thousands of people who have backed this much-needed development and investment into the city. The club remains fully committed to delivering the new stadium which will not only benefit the city, but the wider region.”
Mr Crispin told Bristol24-7 earlier this month: “We feel so strongly that the way the council handled the thing made it so one-sided that we our side didn’t get a fair crack of the whip.
“Residents still have grave concerns and we have been operating under a cloud of fear. We’re not anti-football club, just anti the development. ”
Council spokesman Peter Holt said the council was ”very confident that due legal process was adhered to at every stage and we will robustly defend our decision”.