24th Jan, 2020

Wellesbourne Airfield businesses refused permission to reappeal lease ruling

BUSINESSES at Wellesbourne Airfield have been told they cannot reappeal a ruling against the renewal of their leases.

The airfield has been the focus of an on-going dispute between the owners, which want to sell it to developers for housing, and Stratford District Council, which wants it to remain an airfield.

Businesses took their fight to court after owner Littler Investments told them their leases would not be renewed.

But the businesses lost the original case to get their leases renewed in June last year, and an appeal in March.

Flying school Take Flight Aviation and aeroplane workshop Warwickshire Aviation – which took the legal action – have now been told by the Court of the Appeal they cannot reappeal the ruling.

It means they face having to leave the airfield by September 30.

Earlier this year the district council began a compulsory purchase of the airfield to protect it from developers – but that will not be completed before the September deadline.

Rodney Galiffe, owner of South Warwickshire Flying School (SWFS), also based at the airfield and hoping to stay, said the news was a setback.

He said: “The news, although somewhat expected given the advice I had following our appeal, is nevertheless disappointing and another setback to the enormous fight by everyone involved in the legal quest to get the business tenancies renewed.

“Purchase offers and the initial stages of the Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) are in progress with the council reporting that meaningful talks are in progress with the landlords at the present time.

“The business operators are in the forefront of all Stratford District Council’s negotiations. We retain great optimism that a secure and sensible result will ensure before September 30 when the landlords have made known that they will cease all operations.

“SWFS’s present lease will expire on the same date unless there is a successful outcome to the future retention of flying functions.”

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