19th Dec, 2018

Wellesbourne Airfield businesses remain hopeful for a flying future

BUSINESSES at Wellesbourne Airfield remain hopeful for the future ahead of the upcoming appeal against the ruling to end their tenancies.

The businesses – which include flight schools, a cafe and a museum – applied to appeal following a lengthy court battle with site owner Littler Investments which wants to sell the land for development.

Although Stratford District Council stepped in to make a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) of the site, businesses would have been turfed out in October had the appeal been rejected.

The court date on January 17 has bought them some time. If the judge rules in favour of Littler Investments, the tenants will have three months to leave the site.

But Take Flight owner Mike Roberts said evidence against the first ruling was encouraging, as well as the recent adoption of the neighbourhood plan which allows residents a greater say in plans for the area.

He added lack of cooperation from the Littler family who have been approached by the council in regards to the CPO, could also work in their favour.

A district council spokesperson confirmed the authority had received advice regarding the potential value of the airfield, and was consulting legal advisors over the best way to progress the CPO process.

Mr Roberts said: “The tenants are obviously delighted by this news and are hoping to work in partnership with the local authority to secure the future of the airfield and development of the site for aviation purposes.”

So far the fight to keep their tenancies has cost the businesses some £200,000 and a crowdfunding drive was launched shortly after the ruling in June to support appeal costs which businesses expect to be a six figure sum.

Visit www.crowdfunder.co.uk/savewellesbourneairfield to donate to the airfield appeal campaign.

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