Green perspectives on Stockwood and Bristol. Mostly.

Sunday, 19 September 2010

A Freebie from BCFC

To enjoy it live, you'd have had to buy a ticket. But now the club's making it available at absolutely no cost to the viewer. Chairman Steve rallies the crowd before yesterday's match at Ashton Gate.

So, in the interests of balance on this blog, here's the link.

So what's the legal position now?

The media are misrepresenting it as an open choice for the councillors on the Public Rights of Way and Greens Committee, choosing whether or not to accept the Inspector's report. Reject it, and Bristol gets its stadium, arena, world cup matches, pride, and its rightful place on the world map. Accept it, and we're a laughing stock, living on the edge of a dog's bog. Simple, innit?

Well no, according to the Inspector's report. The final paragraph (thanks to Sacred Spring for the tip) explains the law:

578. ............ the Registration Authority must make its own decision and is in law free to follow or not follow my recommendation as it thinks right, applying the correct legal principles and after due consideration of the evidence. It must, of course, leave out of account, as being wholly irrelevant to the statutory question which it has to decide, ..............all considerations of the desirability of the land's being registered as a green or being developed or put to other uses.

In other words... whether all the bluster about the benefits to Bristol has any substance or not, the task for the Rights of Way Committee (sitting in its role as Village Green Registration Authority) is simply to accept the Inspector's findings or to explain why she's wrong to say that Ashton Vale meets the legal criteria for registration.

Clearly the club's legal advisers and inquiry witnesses failed to expose any flaws in the application during the ten-day Inquiry. No wonder Steve Lansdown is calling on the fans to provide new evidence. If they should manage it, Steve should demand his money back from his lawyers.

He might need it anyway.

"Today I can announce that the Chancellor and I have agreed a package of new measures to crack down on tax avoidance and evasion. We will be ruthless with those often wealthy people and businesses who think they can treat paying tax as an optional extra."
(Liberal Democrat Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander today).


GE said...

DEFRA commissioned a report on Town and Village Greens last year.

You won't be surprised by the conclusions.

GE said...

And on the subject of modern sports-business, brilliant article from Simon Jenkins, exposing it for the ripoff that it is.

sacredspring said...

Lansdown is splashing the cash on top legal brains to pick a loophole through this one. Think he's cooked his goose despite being given extra time by a desperate council. And despite Sextons daily plea for someone to come forward with the unlikely cast-iron evidence to discredit the inspectors findings.