Thursday, 28 September 2017

Save Leach Grove Woods

This is an unusual wild area adjacent to Leatherhead hospital, where children can ride bikes along muddy tracks, build jumps and create dens, and dogs can be walked off the lead. Many of you will remember the efforts put in by both Residents and by our energetic former member, Flip Cargill, who secured a Village Green Listing for Leach Grove Woods. Tim Jones, who has lived in Leatherhead all his life took over the fight when after Flip had left area, the owners, NHS Property Services Ltd challenged the designation by Surrey county Council. Sadly, in 2016 a court case decided Surrey had been wrong to designate the area a village green because it was owned by the NHS. 
This has now become a nationally important decision, so, together with a similar case from Lancashire Tim decided to challenge the decision that Town and Village Greens cannot be registered if:
1) they are owned by public bodies performing their statutory functions
2) the recreational use of the land would be incompatible with that purpose.
The Appeal will be heard at the High Court on 4th-5th October to decide if it is legally permitted for a public body to have land they own registered as a village green. 
Tim is asking for support, to bring this important case to the Court of Appeal in the hope of stopping a dangerous precedent being set and, of course, to protect Leach Grove Woods too.
Tim's lawyers are acting on a conditional fee arrangement which means that if they lose the case in the Court of Appeal they will not get paid, and Tim will have incurred expenses and will have to pay up to £10,000 towards the NHS’s costs.
Donations can be made at: