Court setback for Newbury protest

Leading environmental organisations yesterday failed in their attempt to join the legal battle against the Newbury bypass. Three Court of Appeal judges refused to allow conservation groups including the World Wide Fund for Nature and the Council for the Protection of Rural England to link up with actions by treetop protesters and local residents.

They also refused the protesters leave to appeal against a High Court ruling that the Department of Transport had been lawfully granted possession of land on the bypass site.

But Lord Justice Rose encouraged the campaigners by advising that at no stage of the legal dispute had anyone attempted a judicial review of the compulsory purchase orders.