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Last Updated: Monday, 24 July 2006, 15:29 GMT 16:29 UK
High Court bid to stop demolition
Edge Lane plans
Developers wants to spend 350m regenerating the area
A 350m plan to demolish hundreds of homes in Liverpool is a "return to the bad old days of 60s' clearances," the High Court has heard.

Resident Elizabeth Pascoe, of Edge Lane, was beginning a legal fight against plans to bulldoze hundreds of homes to build a dual carriageway.

Mrs Pascoe, 59, faces losing her Victorian terraced home after a compulsory purchase order (CPO).

She is asking the judge to quash the decision by Deputy PM John Prescott.

'Social cleansing'

Her counsel Robert McCracken told Mr Justice Forbes the scheme had been described by Liverpool Wavertree MP Jane Kennedy as "a form of social cleansing."

About 400 residents could be forced to sell their homes.

Mrs Pascoe, backed by many neighbours who are refusing to move, believes the decision by Mr Prescott, when he was responsible for planning control, will destroy the community.

Mr McCracken told the court: "Not surprisingly, the scheme is controversial, both locally and nationally. Critics say it is, in architectural terms, a return to the bad old days of the 1960s' clearances."

He added that the process which allowed the scheme was legally flawed.

Human Rights

Mrs Pascoe argues the Urban Regeneration Agency, which issued the CPO operating under the name English Partnerships, did not have power to issue it for her home, and Mr Prescott, in approving it, misdirected himself in law.

She also claims that the CPO breaches Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which protects the right to respect for family life and home.

The Government and English Partnerships argue that the scheme is intended to revitalise a deprived area and provide an attractive entrance to the city.

The court hearing is set for two days with a reserve judgement expected.

Homes demolition plan challenged
24 Mar 06 |  Merseyside
MP attacks house demolition plans
16 Feb 06 |  Merseyside
Prescott backs homes' demolition
15 Feb 06 |  Merseyside

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