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Welcome Developments in the Protest against Developments - Miswell Lane Public Open Space!

Nick and Denise Miswell Lane Public Open SpaceIt has been a long-standing anomaly that a triangle of land off Miswell Lane in Tring was privately owned despite being designated as Public Open Space by the former Tring Urban District Council - a situation which has dragged on for nearly 50 years!
This was the subject of a 12-year court case which firmly established the land as Public Open Space. Unfortunately the land was then sold at auction by the owners and bought up by a developer at a price far in excess of what Dacorum Borough Council (DBC) thought at the time it could afford.
Since then there has been a series of unsuccessful planning applications, with the more recent ones involving partial development with the remainder of the land being given to DBC. The last such compromise involved just 20% of the land being developed with the remainder becoming DBC property, thus safeguarding its public use.
The latest excellent news is about the withdrawal of the planning application for building 2 houses on 20% of the privately owned public open space - on part of the top half of the Miswell Lane recreation area. Whether or not this will be followed by a proposal to sell the whole site to DBC, or whether it will be just a modified application we do not yet know.

So very well done to all the protesters and objectors.

Of course, the ideal outcome is for Dacorum Borough Council to come up with enough money to buy the whole of the land from the owners. I've been urging them to do this for well over 10 years now. The picture shows former DBC councillor Denise Rance and me in our younger days campaigning in 2007 for DBC to acquire the land under a Compulsary Purchase Order.

If DBC do this, we get 100% of the open space at last - and the developers get some money in the bank without the trouble and risk of building houses that they might not be able to sell.

Fingers crossed for next move!