LAST TREE STANDING – CORONATION WOOD

 

New plans for Sizewell B site approved by ESC on 20th January 2021

(YouTube ESC Meeting Link)

Thanks to those councillors who spoke up about the destruction of Coronation Wood & impact on the AONB

New plans approved based on being better than 2019 plans-shows approval should never have been allowed in 2019

TASC RESPONSE PDF

 

December 2020 saw the felling of Coronation Wood

It was yet another sad day for 2020, when the giant chainsaw & monstrous tree grabber, begun the destruction of the 100-year woodland.

Footage soon appeared on social media as news of the chainsaws filtered out. Several folks arrived at the site and it soon became apparent, this wanton and premature destruction, was taking place without EDF having received a bat mitigation licence from Natural England. A member of the public called the Wildlife Crime Prevention unit, they arrived, but failed to stop the work. It is unknown if the woodland floor had been cleared of reptiles, hedgehogs, and other mammals that are known to use the wood and if the animals were translocated to a safe area.

 

 

In a recent letter to the EADT, Carly Vince stated that EDF “will avoid doing ground clearance during their hibernation period”. Not a good start then.

Natural England admitted they had had many complaints and we await what further steps, if any, they will be taking.

TASC are pursuing the matter through a freedom of information request to Natural England as well as corresponding with Suffolk Police and liaising with professional ecologist to establish whether a wildlife crime has been committed. Our investigations continue.

Actions speak louder than words and EDF’s actions with regard to Coronation Wood speak volumes about their lack of regard for the protection of our environment, their risible claims can only be described as pure greenwash. If EDF can treat a relatively small area such as Coronation Wood with such callous disregard to the wildlife that used it, one is left to shudder at the thought of what environmental damage they would inflict throughout Sizewell C’s main development site of over 900 acres.

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HISTORY

Coronation Wood was planted by local landowner, Glencairn Stuart Ogilvie, in or around 1911, to celebrate the Coronation of George V. Ogilvie went on to build the iconic village of Thorpeness, a couple of miles down the coast. The Ogilvie family originally owned swaths of land as far as RSPB Minsmere, much of it now in the hands of EDF and the NDA.

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Local Outrage

When locals first heard of the proposed, premature, felling of the wood, it caused much outrage. Although EDF insisted the wood was of poor quality, having looked after it, or not in this case, for over 25 years, it was still home to badgers, bats, and invertebrates. Sitting on the edge of Sizewell Marshes, it also acted as a landscape and sound barrier to the nuclear complex.  On September 9th, 2019, East Suffolk Council debated and voted on the planning application.

In packed council chambers, much to the apparent distress of many, planning permission was approved by just one vote. The only people celebrating were EDF and presumably some of the council, but most definitely, not all.

Joan Girling and TASC were appalled by the decision from ESC, seemingly ignoring local opinions and objections and felt the only action would be to take the Council to a Judicial Review. TASC’s view has always been, should Sizewell C not get the go-ahead, then the industrialisation of yet more of the Suffolk AONB would be unnecessary and the planning application should be included in the DCO for SZC, submitted by EDF in July 2020.

Alas, after 3 attempts by our renowned lawyers, Leigh Day, and huge financial support from many generous donors, the case was finally thrown out. A sad day indeed.

We are all indebted to Joan Girling for bravely fronting the case supported by TASC.

TASC Press releases on the case can be found here

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WE NEED YOUR HELP AGAIN

TASC are also indebted to YOU, the concerned public, who gave so generously to the Coronation Wood crown funding appeal, both via Crowd Justice and directly, but also by organising events to raise funds and giving so willingly to our Pop-Up shop in Halesworth in Feb 2020.

Sadly all these amazing fundraising events have ground to a halt due to Covid-19 and like all NGO’s we need funds.

Soon the Planning Inspectorate will be asking for further evidence and TASC have some exciting experts, lined up. Some will need paying, others donating their advice, for free.

Please give what you can, we will be so grateful and your donations will allow TASC to continue the fight against Sizewell C.

 

You can donate HERE

 

Thank You

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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