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Michael Bernard surveys felled trees in Combe Haven while waiting to hear from the High Court. (Photo: Bill Coney)

TV date Monday while court ponders

The long-awaited BBC South-East programme on local historian Nick Austin’s theory of where the Battle of Hastings really took place is now scheduled to be shown on Monday 4 February at 7.30pm. Meanwhile the High Court is expected soon to set a date to hear Michael Bernard’s application to have the road-building stopped, writes Nick Terdre.

A lot has happened since the BBC South-East’s Inside Out programme was shot late last year – at the time, as Nick Austin says, the presenter took it rather tongue-in-cheek. Now that the issue has won national prominence, he may be wishing he’d approached it with a bit more gravitas.

Meanwhile yesterday – Friday 1 February – was the deadline set by the High Court for East Sussex County Council to submit their comments on Michael Bernard’s legal action to stop the road-building while English Heritage assesses Mr Austin’s claims.

In mid January Mr Bernard asked ESCC to suspend work on the road while EH carries out its investigation – they refused. Mr Bernard subsequently asked for a judicial review of their decision. This coming week he hopes the High Court will set a date to hear the judicial review request.

An injunction he applied for at the same time for an immediate halt to all work was turned down. But he says he is now considering applying for a further injunction against the road-building on the grounds that the council is acting illegally. “Our legal advice is that they have not got all the necessary permissions to go ahead with the work,” he tells HOT.

The council finds itself in rather an incestuous situation, he says, given its roles as developer, planning authority and highways authority.

Also on Friday Mr Bernard gave an interview to ITV’s Meridian programme against a background of felled trees at the site of the former Camp Decoy which was evicted earlier this week.

Slow march ahead from Battlefields Trusts

Meanwhile, two years after approaching the Battlefields Trusts, Mr Austin is still waiting to hear when he will be able to present to them his Battle of Hastings case.

Given that the reason for the Battlefields Trust is to “save battlefields from destruction by motorways, housing developments etc.”, it is showing very little urgency in deciding whether Mr Austin’s case should be taken up. The trust does not have powers to intervene but it could certainly kick up a fuss.

The trust has, however, set the date of 19 February for another local historian, John Grehan, to give a lecture on his claims that the battle took place on Caldbec Hill to the north of Battle.


See also “Road protests jeopardise jobs” says CEO

And NGOs back link road protest




Posted 13:49 Saturday, Feb 2, 2013 In: The HOT Planet

Also in: The HOT Planet

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