Protesters are ready for ac­tion over park high­way plan

Midweek Visiter - - Front Page - BY KATE LALLY [email protected]­i­tymir­ @kate­lal­lyx

HUN­DREDS of protesters are set to de­scend out­side a High Court to­day (Tues­day, Oc­to­ber 23) as plans to build a new £250m by­pass through a coun­try park in Mersey­side face a le­gal chal­lenge.

High­ways Eng­land (HE) wants to build the road through Rim­rose Val­ley, which runs through Lither­land and Water­loo, to ease con­ges­tion to the Port of Liver­pool.

But the de­ci­sion to go through the park has sparked out­rage across the lo­cal com­mu­nity.

Politi­cians have joined forces with pres­sure group Rim­rose Val­ley Friends to crit­i­cise the de­ci­sion to build through the pop­u­lar green space.

Sefton Coun­cil has ac­cused HE of fail­ing to con­sult on a tun­nel op­tion and has been granted a High Court ju­di­cial re­view.

HE said it was “dis­ap­pointed” at the rul­ing but cam­paign­ers say it is vi­tal that lo­cal peo­ple “get a proper say”.

Sefton Coun­cil leader Ian Ma­her wants HE to aban­don the de­ci­sion to go through Rim­rose Val­ley.

He said last year: “Com­mu­ni­ties have felt ab­so­lutely dev­as­tated since the an­nounce­ment [that HE pre­fer to build a dual car­riage­way through Rim­rose Val­ley] in Au­gust.

“The way the whole process has been han­dled beg­gars be­lieve and the more I have thought about it, the more I be­lieve that we have grounds to chal­lenge and are call­ing for a ju­di­cial re­view on the mat­ter.”

The ju­di­cial re­view will take place in Manch­ester to­day.

Rim­rose Val­ley Friends have or­gan­ised coaches so that peo­ple can go along and have their voices heard, and more than 100 peo­ple are ex­pected to at­tend.

Their spokesman said: “We will be there to show our sup­port for Sefton Coun­cil’s po­si­tion, to demon­strate and to say enough is enough to the judge, the lawyers, High­ways Eng­land, the gov­ern­ment and the na­tion.

“Ev­ery­one is wel­come and our demon­stra­tion will be peace­ful, re­spect­ful and fam­ily-friendly.

“We will show that we are nor­mal, ev­ery­day peo­ple who are not pre­pared to stand by and watch our es­sen­tial green space be snatched away from us and fu­ture gen­er­a­tions, with­out any thought or care for the con­se­quences we’ll be left to suf­fer af­ter High­ways Eng­land has moved on.”

Protesters op­pose the £250m by­pass in Rim­rose Val­ley Park

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