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Last Updated: Friday, 17 June, 2005, 19:55 GMT 20:55 UK
Bluestone row reaches key appeal
Bluestone
Bluestone would comprise lodges, a snow dome and a water park
The row over plans for a massive holiday development in Pembrokeshire has continued in the Court of Appeal.

The 60m Bluestone project has proved controversial because part of it would be built in Pembrokeshire Coast National Park.

The Council for National Parks (CNP) is challenging a High Court decision which gave the scheme the green light.

Developers want to build more than 300 timber lodges alongside sports and leisure facilities.

They claim it will create 900 jobs in an unemployment black spot, but a CNP spokeswoman said the development would "desecrate" the countryside.

This decision is important for all the National Parks
Ruth Chambers, CNP

The appeal is seen as a test case in establishing the balance between local economic benefit and conservation issues.

The Pembrokeshire National Park authority has backed the plan, saying it would not cause environmental damage.

But the CNP, the watchdog which monitors development in national parks across Wales and England, is worried about setting a precedent for developments in other parks.

The case went to Court of Appeal after the CNP was refused permission to appeal against a High Court ruling it lost in December 2004.

A panel of three judges headed by Lord Justice Latham will now rule on the issue, which was debated in court on Friday.

Ruth Chambers, CNP's head of policy, said: "Government policy is that National Parks have the highest level of landscape protection but the Bluestone decision has made a mockery of this."

"This decision is important for all the National Parks," she said.

Bluestone chief executive William McNamara has said the scheme had passed "every stage of the democratic planning process".




SEE ALSO:
Park body's Bluestone appeal bid
17 Jan 05 |  South West Wales
New challenge to holiday village
06 Jan 05 |  South West Wales
Park holiday village plan backed
17 Dec 04 |  South West Wales
Holiday village starts jobs drive
08 Nov 04 |  South West Wales
MP quits over Bluestone fight
28 Apr 04 |  South West Wales
Bellamy backs Bluestone fight
24 Apr 04 |  South West Wales


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