Support Judicial Review of Manston Airport DCO

by Jenny Dawes

Support Judicial Review of Manston Airport DCO

by Jenny Dawes
Jenny Dawes
Case Owner
In applying for Judicial Review, and in continuing to oppose the application for a Development Consent Order, I’m acting alone but with a groundswell of community support.
8
days to go
£105,722
pledged of £120,000 stretch target from 1,804 pledges
Pledge now
Jenny Dawes
Case Owner
In applying for Judicial Review, and in continuing to oppose the application for a Development Consent Order, I’m acting alone but with a groundswell of community support.
Pledge now

This case is raising funds for its stretch target. Your pledge will be collected within the next 24-48 hours (and it only takes two minutes to pledge!)

Latest: July 22, 2021

WHY AM I STILL FUNDRAISING?

The response to this CrowdJustice appeal has exceeded expectations and the DCO has been quashed - so why do I still need to fundraise?

A simple answer: almost all the money raised has now been expende…

Read more

This is a local issue of major national significance.

Kent’s Thanet coastline and a number of towns and villages are facing disaster, the effects of which will be felt much further afield.

The disused airport at Manston has been given permission by the Government to re-open as a highly-polluting cargo hub. This is against the advice of the Government’s own planning experts, which sets a worrying precedent in the face of climate change.

According to the Government’s own experts, re-opening the airport will damage the local economy and impact negatively on the UK’s carbon budget and our commitments to the Paris climate agreement.

The campaign, described in the Case Updates, has progressed from an initial application for Judicial Review, to the point where the Secretary of State for Transport is to re-determine the application for an order granting Development Consent for the re-opening and development of Manston Airport.

Please help by donating towards the legal battle today.


Background 

Manston Airport sits 0.3 miles from Ramsgate in Kent, in the far south-east corner of England. A former military airfield, this short-lived commercial airport closed in 2014 having failed under three previous owners.

In 2018 an application was made to the Government for a Development Consent Order (DCO) to turn the disused site into a dedicated cargo airport.

After two years’ rigorous investigation, the Examining Authority (EA) (comprising a panel of four Planning Inspectors) appointed by the Secretary of State to conduct an examination of the application reported that the airport would: have a material impact on the ability of Government to meet its carbon reduction targets”. 

The EA also noted that, due to demand being met elsewhere, a new cargo airport is not needed, either locally or nationally. The EA said: “the levels of freight that the Proposed Development could expect to handle are modest and could be catered for at existing airports” and that the would-be airport developer had: “failed to demonstrate sufficient need for the Proposed Development.”

The EA concluded that ‘on balance the benefits of this proposal would not outweigh its impacts’ and recommended that the Government should NOT grant development consent.


The Government has ignored this conclusion and given Manston Airport DCO the go ahead.

Please help challenge an irrational and damaging decision.

Climate Impact

The cargo-first development at Manston will handle the noisiest and most polluting type of aircraft, planes not even allowed at Heathrow. These are also the most expensive way of moving freight.

Local Impact

The opening of a dedicated cargo hub will cause irreparable harm to the people, the natural environment and the economy of East Kent. Residents in the seaside towns of Ramsgate and Herne Bay, and in surrounding villages, will be living under low-flying, heavy-duty, highly-polluting aircraft. Some will be a mere 500ft below the flight path.

It will ruin our health and well-being as well as blighting the tourist industry on which so many depend. This will not only be a disaster for local people and our towns and villages, but also for the climate change obligations of the UK.

Who Am I?

I chair Ramsgate Coastal Community Team. Set up as part of a government initiative in 2016, it's a local partnership with an understanding of the issues facing our area and charged with developing an effective forward strategy for the whole of Ramsgate.

I was born in Kent and now live in Ramsgate on the Isle of Thanet. I’m not alone in saying this is a very special place and many other people feel just as strongly about the area and the damaging effects of this government decision to grant the go-ahead for an airport that isn’t needed.

Aim

With the support of those affected, I’m launched an application for a Judicial Review of the Secretary of State’s decision,  an action that led to the quashing of the original DCO.  My aim now is to ensure that the Secretary of State has the necessary information to re-determine his decision and refuse the application for a Development Consent Order for the re-opening and development of Manston Airport.

The fundraising target stands.  The re-determined decision is not likely to be the end of the process; I need your support to be able to respond quickly to whatever the Secretary of State may decide.

Solicitors Kate Harrison and Susan Ring of Harrison Grant have agreed to act for me and to instruct barristers Richard Wald QC, Paul Stinchcombe QC and Gethin Thomas of 39 Essex Chambers.

Thank you for reading this.  

Recent contributions

  • Sarah pledged £50
    Match Sarah's pledge of £50
    This is not sustainable. The catastrophic effects of the changes in climate we are already seeing at 1.2 degrees centigrade rise in global temperature make it clear that airport expansion must stop. We cannot afford to do this to the environment.
  • Alison pledged £10
    Match Alison's pledge of £10
    We must save our planet from environmental pollution and try to stop the weather extremes of flooding and temperatures over 30c we’ve experienced recently. I wish you good luck with the campaign
  • Kim pledged £25
    Match Kim's pledge of £25
    I continue to oppose the development of the old Manston Airport site, which had failed at every turn, as a cargo hub. It will be detrimental to both the environment and the wellbeing of those who live in and around Thanet, nor will it enhance our lovely peaceful coastal areas and tourism.

Be a promoter

Your share on Facebook could raise £26 for the case

I'll share on Facebook
Update 24

Jenny Dawes

July 22, 2021

WHY AM I STILL FUNDRAISING?

The response to this CrowdJustice appeal has exceeded expectations and the DCO has been quashed - so why do I still need to fundraise?

A simple answer: almost all the money raised has now been expended on legal fees and, more recently, on paying an expert consultant.

Another simple answer: the fight to overturn the decision to grant development consent for the re-opening and development of Manston Airport goes on

Lawyers are familiar with the process of Judicial Review, making it possible to estimate the likely cost of each stage but this was the first DCO to be quashed since the introduction of the Planning Act 2008, making it more difficult to anticipate costs. While the Act provides guidance on what has to happen next, these directions are now being implemented for the first time. They require the Secretary of State to set out key issues and invite further written representations - effectively taking the process back to the beginning.

When the Secretary of State issued his invitation, my legal team agreed on the need for expert evidence: I was delighted when York Aviation Ltd agreed to take this on. The consultancy is very familiar with RSP's proposals for Manston and contributed extensively to the original examination and the Examining Authority's recommendation that development consent should not be granted.

The Secretary of State has appointed an independent aviation assessor, Ove Arup & Partners Ltd, to advise him on the need for the development and to produce a report on those findings. This report will be made public, along with all submissions. We will have 28 days to respond and, once again, I will need to call on both lawyers and experts for advice and assistance.

The Department of Transport has not set a date for publication of the report and submissions. The letter from the Secretary of State simply says "The assessor’s report, along with all representations received and any supporting information, will be made available on the Planning Inspectorate’s National Infrastructure Planning website as soon as possible after the 9 July 2021 deadline for responses."

Fundraising for this campaign has been incremental. Now there is a sense of urgency. Funding needs to be in place when information is released.

Your generous donations have covered the costs of legal action so far and, with the addition of costs awarded against the Secretary of State, made possible my response to the Statement of Matters. (Costs awarded against the developer, RiverOak Strategic Partners Ltd, have not yet been agreed.) The next stage is to raise £25,000 to ensure the strongest possible case be made against the re-opening and redevelopment of Manston.

TIMELINE:

  • 2018: Application for a Development Consent Order (DCO) to turn the disused site into a dedicated cargo airport;
  • 9 January 2019 - 9 July 2019 Examination of the application: 14 hearings and 2,052 relevant representations;
  • 18 October 2019: Examining Authority's Report of Findings and Conclusions and Recommendation sent to the Secretary of State for Transport;
  • 17 January 2020: Invitation from the Secretary of State to submit further information or comments;
  • 9 July 2020: Manston Airport Development Consent Order made; Examining Authority's report made public;
  • 24 July 2020: Notice of intention to seek Judicial Review sent to the Secretary of State and the Interested Party, RiverOak Strategic Partnership Ltd;
  • 20 August 2020: Claim for Judicial Review lodged;
  • 14 October 2020: Permission for Judicial Review granted;
  • 14 November 2020: Dates set for hearing - 16/17 February 2021;
  • 1 December 2020: Secretary of State's intention to withdraw his decision made known;
  • 15 February 2021: Manston Airport Development Consent Order 2020 quashed by the High Court;
  • 26 April 2021: Secretary of State appoints Independent Aviation Assessor on a six-month contract;
  • 11 June 2021: Secretary of State issues a Statement of Matters inviting further submissions;
  • 9 July 2021: Closing date for submissions;
  • 9 July - 25 October? 28 days to respond following publication of Interested Party submissions and Independent Assessor's report;
  • 25 October 2021: Independent aviation assessor's contract ends;
  • 31 October - 12 November 2021: UK to host 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow.
Update 23

Jenny Dawes

July 9, 2021

One Year On...

"The lesson, to my mind, is obvious: if we fail to hold organisations to account for their mistakes and obfuscations, they'll keep repeating them."

 George Monbiot, The Guardian Journal, Friday 9 July 2021

It's exactly a year since the Examining Authority's Report of Findings and Conclusions and Recommendation to the Secretary of State for Transport  was released.  That report clearly stated: The Examining Authority recommends that the Secretary of State should not grant development consent.

On the same day, the Decision Letter from the Secretary of State for Transport was also published: 

Summary of the Secretary of State’s Decision: The Secretary of State has carefully considered the ExA’s Report and has decided, under section 114(1)(a) of the 2008 Act, to make, with modifications, a DCO granting development consent for the proposals in the Application.

With the help of donations made through CrowdJustice, it has been possible to hold the Secretary of State to account. Permission for Judicial Review was granted on 12 October 2020 but on 15 February 2021, the day before the Judicial Review was to be heard in court, the  Secretary of State's decision was formally quashed - the first of two DCO's to be quashed on the same day and the first since the introduction of the 2008 Act.

It took until 11 June 2021 for the Department of Transport to release the Statement of Matters inviting further representations by midnight this day (9 July 2021).

Now, a slight pause while the independent assessor, appointed by the Secretary of State to advise him, prepares his report on "... matters relating to the need for the Development..."

The assessor's report and all representations will be published on the Planning Inspectorate's National Infrastructure Planning website: https://infrastructure.planninginspectorate.gov.uk/projects/south-east/manston-airport/

We are to be given a further opportunity to hold the Secretary of State to account: "The Secretary of State will, as a minimum, allow a period of 28 days for the second round of consultation to allow Interested Parties to submit further representations on the responses received by the 9 July deadline and the Independent Assessor's draft report."

Today, a personal representation, supported by lengthy and detailed expert evidence, is being submitted.  This has been made possible by the support of my legal team and by the generous amount donated through CrowdJustice but, and there has to be a 'but', this is far from the end of the campaign.  There will be a further need to call on expert advice and to act on advice from my legal team when the time comes to respond to the  independent assessor's report.

Beyond immediate concerns, the Statement of Matters includes an opportunity to comment on "the extent to which the Secretary of State should, in his re-determination of the application, have regard the sixth carbon budget (covering the years between 2033-2037) which will included emissions from international aviation".

George Monbiot's article, Our Gullible BBC has let climate deniers walk all over it, concludes: "The lesson, to my mind, is obvious: if we fail to hold organisations to account for their mistakes and obfuscations, they'll keep repeating them.  Climate crimes have perpetrators.  They also have facilitators."






Update 22

Jenny Dawes

June 11, 2021

Steps towards re-determination

Just as our funding page rolls forward for another 30 days, and four months after the application for a Development Consent Order for the re-opening and Development of Manston Airport was quashed, the Department of Transport has written to all interested parties (anyone who registered as an interested party for the initial examination) to invite further representations by 9 July 2021.

The Secretary of State is inviting further representations on the following matters:

  • the extent to which current national or local policies (including any changes since 9 July 2020 such as, but not limited to, the re-instatement of the ANPS) inform the level of need for the services that the Development would provide and the benefits that would be achieved from the Development;
  • whether the quantitative need for the Development has been affected by any changes since 9 July 2019, and if so, a description of any such changes and the impacts on the level of need from those changes (such as, but not limited to, changes in demand for air freight, changes of capacity at other airports, locational requirements for air freight and the effects of Brexit and/or Covid);
  • the extent to which the Secretary of State should, in his re-determination of the application, have regard to the sixth carbon budget (covering the years between 2033 – 2037) which will include emissions from international aviation; and
  • any other matters arising since 9 July 2019 which Interested Parties consider are material for the Secretary of State to take into account in his re-determination of the application.

In addition, the Secretary of State is also asking for the following information:

  • In light of the passage of time since close of the examination, the Secretary of State requests the Applicant to consider the currency of the environmental information produced for the application (including information submitted to inform the Habitats Regulation Assessment) and either confirm the continued currency of that information, or where necessary, to submit updated information.
  • The Secretary of State seeks confirmation or otherwise from the Government Legal Department of consent to the compulsory acquisition under section 135 of the Planning Act 2008 in relation to plots 019c and 05b held as Queen’s Nominee in respect of bona vacantia land.
  • The Secretary of State seeks confirmation or otherwise from both the Met Office and the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government of consent to the compulsory acquisition under section 135 of the Planning Act 2008 in relation to plot 27.

The full text of the DfT's letter can be found at: http://infrastructure.planninginspectorate.gov.uk/document/TR020002-005360

Worth noting paragraph 9 which states:

The Secretary of State has appointed an independent aviation assessor to advise him on matters relating to the need for the Development and to produce a report summarising those findings

Update 21

Jenny Dawes

May 10, 2021

We're not alone

Last Friday, Tim Johnson, Director, Aviation Environment Federation wrote to Grant Shapps, Secretary of State for Transport, and Robert Jenrick, Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, on behalf of Manston and groups campaigning against expansion at seven other UK airports: Leeds Bradford, Luton, Bristol, Southampton, Heathrow, Stansted and Gatwick. The letter asked for a moratorium on airport expansion until the Government has framed a comprehensive aviation strategy.

According to the Guardian, the government's response focussed on those airport expansions subject to the local planning process ie all except Manston, confirming "ministers will consider the case individually, in line with our published policy".

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/may/10/campaigners-say-uk-airport-expansion-plans-must-be-suspended-amid-new-climate-goals

Update 20

Jenny Dawes

April 12, 2021

Waiting...

Not quite two months since the Consent Order quashing the Manston Airport DCO was sealed by the Court and once again the funding page has rolled over as we wait for the Secretary of State for Transport to reconsider RSP's application and invite further representations.

In the meantime, his department has confirmed that RiverOak Strategic Partners would be paid £8.5m to compensate them for "the costs incurred in condensing their planned programme of works to develop the site back into a commercial airport".  RSP's own website states this is "compensation for the use of the Manston site as a post Brexit customs clearance post for the first six months of the year.  In addition, the DfT will pay a further amount to cover the cost of site reinstatement following their departure from Manston."

Update 19

Jenny Dawes

March 15, 2021

COSTS AND CUSHION

“… the Applicant has failed to demonstrate sufficient need for the Proposed Development, additional to (or different from) the need which is met by the provision of existing airports.”

from the Examining Authority report on the examination into the application for a Development Consent Order for the former Manston Airport, October 2019


Pre-pandemic, pre-Brexit, before East Midlands Airport and Southampton Airport among others were given freeport status, the Examining Authority concluded that “the Secretary of State should not grant development consent”. Yet, despite this recommendation, development consent was granted on 9 July 2020.

In December 2020, the Secretary of State conceded that his decision letter did not give adequate reasons and on 15 February 2021, Mr Justice Holgate approved a Consent Order quashing the Manston Airport Development Consent Order 2020.

The Secretary of State has three months from the 15 February (although the period could be extended) to write to interested parties, setting out key issues and inviting further written representations on those issues, before making a decision based on the Examining Authority’s Report and any further representations.

Manston Airport was the first ever proposed airport development to go through the DCO examination process, the first airport DCO to be challenged, and, apparently, the first grant of consent for a Nationally Significant Infrastructure Project to be quashed since the introduction of the Planning Act 2008.

In October 2019 the Examining Authority found the applicant had failed to demonstrate sufficient need for a new airport. Given everything that has happened since then, it is hard to imagine what justification could be given for overturning this recommendation a second time. 

Thanks to the generosity of donors and to the judge’s decision to award costs against the Secretary of State and, unusually, against the developer, RiverOak Strategic Partners Limited, the costs of obtaining the Consent Order quashing the DCO have been not only been met but there is a cushion against the costs of any future legal action.

Update 18

Jenny Dawes

Feb. 15, 2021

DCO QUASHED

The Manston Airport Development Consent Order 2020 has been quashed.  

Here is the sealed Consent Order  received from the Court today:

Consent Order sealed 15.02.21.pdf


Update 17

Jenny Dawes

Feb. 11, 2021

NO NEWS

The funding page has rolled forward for another 30 days (and will continue to do so until the Manston Airport DCO is resolved).

It's almost 8 weeks since a draft Consent Order, agreed by all parties, and quashing the Secretary of State's decision to make a Manston Airport Development Consent Order 2020, was submitted to the Court. 

We're waiting to hear from the Court...

Update 16

Jenny Dawes

Dec. 4, 2020

What next? What if ...?

Following the quashing of the Manston Airport Development Consent Order 2020 by the Court, the Secretary of State will write to all interested parties, setting out key issues and inviting further written representations on those issues.

Interested parties include the applicant, the local authority and anyone who previously registered by filling out a Relevant Representation form at the inquiry stage (and had it accepted as valid).

The Secretary of State will make a decision based on the Examining Authority’s Report and the further representations. The Secretary of State has three months to make a decision but this can be extended.

The decision could be either a refusal to make a Manston Airport Development Consent Order or a decision to grant such a Consent Order.

If a DCO is refused, RSP may wish to bring a judicial review. I would be an Interested Party in any such challenge.

If a DCO is granted, another judicial review can be brought on the existing grounds and any further grounds that may arise on review of the decision letter.

 Any money left over from the current CrowdJustice campaign can be held in readiness and used towards a second judicial review


Update 15

Jenny Dawes

Dec. 2, 2020

ITS NOT OVER YET BUT ...

... yesterday my solicitors received a letter from the Treasury Solicitor, acting on behalf of the Secretary of State for Transport, which said "my client has agreed to concede this claim on the basis of ground 1(b), namely that the Secretary of State did not give adequate reasons in his decision letter to enable the reader to understand why he disagreed with the Examining Authority Report on the issue of need for the development of Manston Airport".  We subsequently learned that the Interested Party, RiverOak Strategic Partners Ltd, will not be defending their claim.

My lawyers set out three grounds of challenge to the decision to grant a Development Consent Order for the re-opening and development of Manston Airport:

Ground 1: Need

Ground 2: Breach of Procedural Requirement/Unfairness

Ground 3: Net Zero Duty

Here is the full text of Ground 1(b): Failure to Give Reasons:

75. S.116 of the 2008 Act and Regulation 30 of the EIA Regulations both impose a duty on the Defendant to give reasons for granting a DCO. In South Buckinghamshire DC v Porter [2004] UKHL 33, the House of Lords confirmed that any such reasons must be adequate and intelligible, and enable the reader to understand why the matter was decided as it was and what conclusions were reached on the principal important controversial issues.

76. As to the quality of the reasons for disagreeing with the ExA on “need”, given that the Defendant asked himself entirely the wrong question, falsely eliding “need” with “benefit”, his reasons for disagreeing with the ExA on need are, inevitably, inadequate, improper and unintelligible. An informed reader of the DL is wholly unable to discern:

a. Why the Defendant considered that there was a “clear case of need” for the development which existing airports (Heathrow, Stansted and EMA) could not meet.

b. Upon what basis the quantum of anticipated need for freight had been assessed by him.

c. Upon what basis the capacity of existing airports within the south east to accommodate that quantum of need had been assessed by him.

d. Whether, and if so why, he considered those existing airports (Heathrow, Stansted and EMA) not to be preferred locations to meet that quantum of need.

e. To what extent he considered need could not be met in the bellyhold of passenger flights to and from those existing airports.

f. Whether, and if so why, he considered that facilities could not be constructed at those existing airports to meet that quantum of need.

g. Upon what basis the Defendant disagreed with the expert evidence produced by York Aviation, and others, against the need case.

77. These issues were all addressed in detail in the ExA’s report, but were not mentioned, let alone grappled with, in the Defendant’s perfunctory and dismissive DL.

The Treasury Solicitor will now draft an order disposing of the case.  The order will have to be approved by all parties and submitted to the Court to be sealed - this final step in the current stage may take several weeks.

This update is couched in very formal language but I'm enormously relieved to have got this far and bowled over by all the support I've received.  It's been a joint effort!  

Thank you!

Update 14

Jenny Dawes

Nov. 14, 2020

WE HAVE A DATE FOR THE HEARING!

The Court has listed our 1.5 day hearing for 16/17 February 2021.  

To recap, in July 2020, the Secretary of State for Transport gave permission for Manston Airport to reopen as a freight hub. Approval of the Development Consent Order (the first for a UK airport) went against the advice of the planning inspectorate which had concluded that "the airport will damage the local economy and impact negatively on the UK's carbon budget and our commitments to the Paris Agreement".  

The Examining Authority's Report of Findings and Conclusions and Recommendations to the Secretary of State for Transport recommended that the Secretary of State should not grant development consent. 

The Examining Authority (ExA) was composed of four senior Planning Inspectors who made their recommendation to refuse the DCO after one of the most intensely scrutinised examinations ever handled: an unprecedented 682 pages of written questions (13 times the average), 2,052 relevant representations and a further 585 additional submissions.  The ExA's final report exceeded 1,000 pages and made it clear the the Applicant had "failed to demonstrate sufficient need for the Proposed Development, additional to (or different from) the need which is met by the provision of existing airports".

The Secretary of State's Decision Letter can be found here: Decision Letter

The Examining Authority's full report can be found here: ExA Report

Thank you for all your support!  With three months still to go to  the hearing, we're well on our way towards achieving the fundraising target of £120,000. 




Update 13

Jenny Dawes

Oct. 14, 2020

A note on costs

The court has imposed a cost limiting order cap limiting the amount I will have to pay towards the SoS's and RSP's combined costs, in the event that we lose the case, to £5,000. This is because this is an Aarhus Convention claim concerning the environment.

If the SoS and RSP lose, the amount they will have to pay towards my costs has been limited to £35,000 each - a total of £70,000. This will only go part of the way towards meeting the overall cost of bringing the case. 

Both solicitors and counsel have supplied detailed estimates of costs, including VAT, set against the various stages of the case, for example preparing papers for filing, considering the defendant's reply, the hearing itself and finally any post-judgement matters. The judge's decision moves the case to a new stage of the process.

Update 12

Jenny Dawes

Oct. 14, 2020

WE HAVE PERMISSION!

The Court has granted permission for a Judicial Review of the Secretary of State for Transport's decision to give development consent for the reopening and redevelopment of Manston Airport.

Further, the Court has agreed that this is an Aarhus Convention claim and that costs should be capped.

No date has been set for the hearing but both the SoS (the Defendant) and RiverOak Strategic Partners Limited (the Interested Party) have until 16 November 2020 to lodge full grounds for resisting the claim.

It's been extraordinarily moving to see donations coming in and to read the comments.  Thank you!  

Not all applications for Judicial Review get this far but now the campaign is rolling forward for another 30 days.  My wonderful legal team has provided a detailed estimate of their fees and once again I'm increasing the target - but this time in the knowledge that costs will be capped.  

Ramsgate is a special place and worthy of respect!

Update 11

Jenny Dawes

Sept. 14, 2020

And on it goes...

As the funding target rolls over for a further 30 days both the Secretary of State for Transport and RiverOak Strategic Partners Ltd have declared their intention to contest the claim for judicial review.

They now have five weeks to prepare and submit their full grounds for resisting the claim.  

I am enormously grateful to everyone who has contributed so far - the £100,000 target is still challenging but it's both realistic and achievable!  The first stretch target of £75,000 felt daunting; achieving and then surpassing it has been morale boosting - thank  you!

Update 10

Jenny Dawes

Aug. 20, 2020

IT'S IN!

The claim has been issued at the High Court: the Defendant and Interested Party (RSP) now have until 11 September to file an acknowledgement of service indicating whether they wish to contest the claim and, if so, setting out their summary grounds for doing so.



Update 9

Jenny Dawes

Aug. 15, 2020

GETTING READY...

Today, the appeal for funding moves into a second thirty-day cycle and I've taken the decision to increase the stretch target.

The legal team is preparing to issue judicial review proceedings in light of an unsatisfactory pre-action protocol response.  This response was not unexpected.  

The deadline for the application for judicial review is Thursday 20 August 2020. On the basis of the government's response, the lawyers are able to finalise the bundle of papers for submission, including an estimate of costs.  The Secretary of State accepts this would be an Aarhus Convention claim but has reserved his position on whether or not it would be appropriate to apply to vary the limit on recoverable costs.  

A big 'thank you' to everyone who contributed towards the first stretch target!  Please spread the word so that this second, more ambitious target becomes attainable!




Update 8

Jenny Dawes

Aug. 12, 2020

MOVING FORWARD

Thank you to everyone who has contributed so far or is thinking about contributing!  

For clarification: this appeal will continue beyond the date set for achieving the first stretch target.

The Secretary of State has chosen not to reverse his decision.  Therefore my legal team is preparing to submit an application next week for judicial review.


Update 7

Jenny Dawes

Aug. 7, 2020

A RESPONSE HAS BEEN RECEIVED

The Government Legal Department responded to the pre-action letter setting out draft grounds for judicial review, ahead of the deadline of 4.00 pm today.

I await advice from my legal team.

Update 6

Jenny Dawes

Aug. 3, 2020

WILL HE, WON'T HE...?

The Secretary of State for Transport has until 4pm on Friday to respond to the pre-action letter that sets out the draft grounds for judicial review.

At this stage, the Secretary of State could concede defeat. 

Should he choose not to to do so, the legal team will issue the claim at Court and apply for permission to bring judicial review proceedings.

Update 5

Jenny Dawes

July 29, 2020

COSTS AND LIABILITIES

This page is about raising money to cover legal costs – for lawyers, experts and court fees – and to cover any liability for the costs of other parties should I lose.

The normal rule in legal cases is that the loser has to pay the winner’s costs. But in environmental law cases the amount a losing claimant has to pay is normally limited to £5K.

If the case is lost only the claimant is liable to pay the other side’s costs. There are government proposals to widen the list of those who could be liable to those who have given large donations, but those changes have not been brought into law

Update 4

Jenny Dawes

July 27, 2020

AN ADDITION TO THE LEGAL TEAM

Barristers Richard Wald QC and Gethin Thomas have been joined by their colleague Paul Stinchcombe QC also of 39 Essex Chambers.

Update 3

Jenny Dawes

July 25, 2020

A SIGNIFICANT STEP!

Yesterday my lawyers sent a Judicial Review Pre-action Protocol letter to the Secretary of State setting out the proposed grounds for judicial review.

The Secretary of State now has 14 days to respond substantively to this letter.

I will keep you updated.

Update 2

Jenny Dawes

July 24, 2020

STEP BY STEP

Thank you CrowdJustice for promoting this campaign to your support base yesterday!  It  is hugely encouraging to receive messages of support from around the country.

Yesterday was also a day for reviewing the funding target.  This is a complex case: the Examining Authority's Report alone is more than 1,000 pages.

The funding target has been increased to allow for a number of possibilities.

The first step is to engage in pre-action correspondence with the Secretary of State. A pre-action letter setting out the draft grounds for judicial review is about to be sent and the Secretary of State will have 14 days to respond. It is open to the Secretary of State to concede defeat before proceedings have even been issued. .

If the Secretary of State does not concede, the next step will be to issue the claim at Court and apply for permission to bring judicial review proceedings. This will be served on the Secretary of State as the Defendant and the developer as an Interested Party. All this must be done by 20 August 2020.

If the Defendant and Interested Party want to contest the claim, they will need to file a summary defence; a judge will then consider whether to grant permission to bring the proceedings without a hearing. If the judge considers there is an arguable case, s/he will grant permission to bring judicial review proceedings and the claim will proceed to a hearing.

The hearing could take place as early as the autumn.



Update 1

Jenny Dawes

July 23, 2020

TIME TO DRAW BREATH

Two weeks in and a chance to say "Thank you" to everyone who has helped to get this far.  It's moving to see contributions and comments pouring in - the first target was reached in a matter of hours!  The second, stretch target is within reach but it's time to aim higher and set the challenge of a moveable target, one that will almost certainly change as the case progresses.  Any application for judicial review has to be lodged within six weeks of the Secretary of State's decision and in this case the deadline is 20 August 2020.

The funding page says this is a matter of local interest but of national importance.  It becomes more and more evident that this proposal to re-open a defunct airport in the south-east corner of England is part of a larger pattern of developments that threaten our environment and affect us all.

The team of solicitors supporting me first successfully challenged Heathrow expansion in 2009, when the then government gave it the go ahead.  Harrison Grant acted for a consortium of local authorities, residents' groups and green groups including WWF and Greenpeace.

Thank you again to everyone who has help with donations ranging from £5 to £5,000.  If you're still thinking about giving - yes please!   Your contribution is needed.

Do reinforce this shared effort by spreading the word, encouraging others to read the funding page and understand what is at stake.

    There are no public comments on this case page.