It appears the long drawn out process on Bristol City Football Club’s future home will take a little longer to be decided.

The Robins, town green campaigners and Bristol City Council have been part of a long running three-year dispute over the future use of land at Ashton Vale. Arguments on whether the site is a town green or suitable for a 30,000-seater venue look no closer to a final decision despite all parties agreeing to end legal proceedings.

But now there will need to be some form of public inquiry held to decide whether it should be granted town green status or available for development. A statement from Bristol City Council said legal teams had agreed terms and a consent order had been submitted to the court.

"Upon the court's approval of the order, the council intends to seek submissions from the parties before finalising the next steps in relation to the northern part of the site," it added. "No decisions have been made on this process, however we shall make every attempt to move to this next stage as speedily as possible."

In 2009 the city council granted the club permission to build a 30,000 seat stadium on the land at Ashton Vale – just one year later an independent inspector ruled the area should be a town green. Bristol City Council then acted against the inspector's recommendation and stated that only the southern part of the land should be made into a town green, which would have allowed the stadium development to go ahead.

That decision was challenged by people campaigning for the area to become a town green and the matter was referred to a judicial review, which was scheduled for Thursday. But thanks to the latest agreement the judicial review will not go ahead.

Bristol City Council will decide what form the new public inquiry will take.


Posted on 13/06/2012