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Friends of Speckled Wood News

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Southern Water Legal Department are unable to tell us who thier customer is?
Southern Water Legal Department are unable to tell us who thier customer is?
3rd October 2017

Contractors Cappagh Browne move in on Speckled Wood to repair drains for an unknown customer which would seem to dump sewage in the Ore Stream leading to more polution in the country park again.  An enforcement complaint has been made to the Council that the members of this organisation will do nothing  we are facing a situation in our borough were wildlife has no protection. Despite the legislation and law no one wants to act legally in these matters A licence is required from Natural England which must be presented on demand. Instead of this the Capagh Browne Ecologist tells us that she a member of the CIEEM when she is clearly not and that she has spoken to Natural England about thier methodology and they are happy for them to proceed.

The owner of the Care home told  us that she asked Southern Water to put thier drains into Clifton Road. So who is this Mystery Customer ? This is equally odd when you consider this was Southern Waters solicitors cover story was that they was acting on an emergency leak for the Care Home.

This blog has to ask the question what value is Natural England giving us then?
Picture Caption: Hide and seek with a Mini Digger perhaps they are trying to hide or loose it!

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Badger activity increases on the Church Street site in Ore as Southern Water move in.
Badger activity increases on the Church Street site in Ore as Southern Water move in. 
28th July 2017

There has been an increase in the activity on the Badger sett at church Street not disclosed by the so called ecologists who work for the developer or council who made public statements there was no sett on this land.

This Badger sett has increased in ten days due to the stress digging from Southern Water on the site. Southern Water has been pumping tanker loads of water through the broken sewer which has fractured parts blown out of it of some 8"-1ft in size from the side wall. This is being done to try to resolve the flooding issues for properties in Clifton road, which are just less 20ft from the sewer in Clifton Road. Does this make any financial sense to you? The work carries on this morning with a new tanker load of water. The CIEEM is investigating statements made at the Planning Application of this matter in respect to CIEEM and memberships.

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Councillors Street calls us liars
Councillors Street calls us liars
16th July 2016
Councillor Street in a public planning meeting said that there had been much misinformation given out by the supporters of Speckled Wood to protect the land at Church street . We was told that a fence had been errected which was not evident and that it had been placed to protect the badgers as was alleged by Cllr Richard Street Planning meeting . It is quite clear from the meeting that Mr Davidson was not even holding an updated biodiversity code of Practice for Planning and Development BS42020:2013 manual which he was refering to. This was evident from its cover. The advice was therefore in our opinion flawed.

On a visit to the site accompanying  Southern Water just last week it was evident that the badgers where not contained in this fence  and had dug out much to our suprise judge for your self we are quite appalled that none of the information provided by any party was taken into account it is just another serious flaw in the Councils Planning Department. Here is the sound recording that was taken:

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Council poised to act in fraud .

Council poises to act in fraud .  
15th July 2017

The Badger Protection Society Ltd have spoken to the Friends of Speckled Wood today informing them that the Council is moving towards an act of fraud in its Planning matter HS/DS/17/00194, which is part of protected open space Speckled Wood. Mr. Newbold of the Badger Protection Society said that the latest document from the Planning Department was a clear move in the Council to cajole the Planning Committee to commit fraud. He said the Council is fully aware of their actions here on this land which Land Registry has informed him has a 32 Acre lease hold. Fraud is defined as wrongful or criminal deception intended to result in financial or personal gain. Since this date the Land Registry has broken off communications and the matter has gone to the ICR . it is quite appalling to think that our Council could be acting in a fraudulent direction any not have any scrutiny in place to ensure this kind of actions are stopped.  Further action is being investigated.

We are quite appalled and you should be aware from this Hillsborough Inquiry that you could be accountable in these matters even 30 years hence. We strongly advise HBC get your house in order .

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Is the Council trying to runaway from its liability?
Is the Council trying to runaway from its liability
23rd June 2017

The Council have been asked if its intention is to commit fraud this week and its reaction is to try to dispose of the land that this alleged fraud surrounds.

The Council has been notified of this fraud in its planning matter HS/DS/1700194.

It is also failing to put material on this site. Please object to this
The initial Registration of this land has been a subject of a complaint with Land Registry for over a month it is quite apparant that the 38 acres of land with a 1000 year lease has not expreed and the Councils First registration was flawed. The Inviestigation bodies are still investigating the matter . Is the Councils action consistant to an admition of this fraud? The web site talks about transparancy. we can see no transparancy here when its own leader of the council used Speckled Wood to manover his seat in Ore.

Is this the kind of actions you expect from your Council A spokesman for the Friends of Speckled Wood Managment Trust said " This is disgraceful".

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Planning Application on Church Street
Friends fight back to Save their Woodland
5th April 2017
The Friends of Speckled Wood Managment Trust Chairman has sent in 1.5kg of objection to the new reserved matters planning to put five  houses on Church Street again on top of the badger sett. This application was halted last month and the wildlife groups all believe it is the first phase to develop Speckled Wood, Hastings as the Council has nothing to register the land of Speckled Wood as they promised they would.

The Badger Society and Friends of Speckled Wood Managment Trust are keen to stop this from happening as it could be the start of real problems on other sites turning our town into a concrete jungle.

The Chairman of Friends of Speckled Wood Managment Trust said: "This is outrageous.". He also said that he will initiate a new consultation form on the friends' website to help the public submit their objection to this new threat on this woodland. The New form is now live on the internet as he promised here:

The Hastings Badger Protection Society Ltd also pledged their support stating "That they are absolutely disgusted."

Picture courtesy google images and Care2 Petitions.

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The Planning Application at Church Street has been withdrawn
The Planning Application at Church Street  has been withdrawn
27th February 2017
Planning on Church Street has been withdrawn by the Applicant according to a notice placed on the Planning Application HS/FA/16/01013 | Development of site to provide 5 dwellings. |  Land at Church Street, Church Street, Hastings, TN35 5AQ. The exact words on the application front page were "Decision Withdrawn by Applicant" and this was dated Mon 27 Feb 2017. The Chairman of Friends of Speckled Wood has been working with Land Registry to obtain information on Land Ownership. Talks are on going.

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Land at Church Street
Public Land at Church Street

 It is known that the Council registered HT19042  in 1962 with an Application Form and document for induced registration. This was later transferred to Homes and Communities  in 2003. The red area is the area which is believed to be a village green and had been used up and to recently without let or hindrance for more than 40 years.

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Council provided evidence in Freedom of Information Request that it didn't register your consultation for the Local Plan
Council provided evidence in Freedom of Information Request that it didn’t register your consultation for the Local Plan
14th December 2016

Hastings Borough Council responded on the WhatDoTheyKnow website yesterday that it had no consultation responses for CV04 the land at Church Street, which was public land and had been used without let or hindrance for more than forty years. The document clearly shows in our opinion that the Consultation was rigged  by an unknown individual to remove traces of CV04. The consultations these figures come from are the Consultation on the Inspectors Preliminary Findings. The Council has until Friday to address this before the matter goes the ICO. Please click on the image to expand it. The original request is here:

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Development starts in Speckled Wood.
Development starts in Speckled Wood.
17 November 2016

A fencing truck arrived today along Church Street and has put up metal fencing rails in Church Street Speckled Wood. The Council has been contacted and has no knowledge of this and have referred the matter to enforcement team. Clearly this is what we expected would happen as the Council do not seem to be honoring the promises made by Councilor Peter Chowney in his election paperwork.

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Secretary of State writes to Chief Lord Justice Lord Thomas
Secretary of State writes to Chief Lord Justice Lord Thomas
22nd August 2016

The Charity received a wonderful letter in the post today stating that our MP Amber Rudd, The Secretary of State has written to Lord Thomas the Chief Lord Justice in regard to  the missing underpinning documents from the Hastings Development Plan. These should have been legally available after the Consultation for the Main Modifications. It is known that Rothers’ Examination Report is correct and was written by the Planning Inspector. Hastings Borough Council document was written by someone in the Council at the time. The Charity has been concerned that the lack of the underpinning Examination Report makes the Development Plan Unsound. This is concerning as the Borough makes Green Space areas which the Council state are protected. It also questions why this process failed and why the Inspector does not seem to have supplied Hastings with an Examination Report when it has supplied one for Rother District Council.

The Charity have been working for over two and a half years to get a Legal Decision from the Freedom of Information Act  2000, The Information Commissioner , Three First Tier Tribunal Service  GRP & GRS Tribunal , The Judicial Appointments and Conduct Ombudsman and now the Chief Lord Justice. A spiral bound report has been prepared by the Hastings Badger Protection Society Directors and Friends of Speckled Wood Management Trust to ensure this matter is properly dealt with. The Charity has been fighting to save Speckled Wood since 2012. The Charity was set up when other groups would not provide an electronic consultation for the public. Over 7000 Reponses were sent in to the Council from the Charity in an attempt to Save Speckled Wood.  The Charity used skips to remove dangerous rusting metal work and rubbish from the site over two years in 2013 in an attempt to clean the area up for the children who play there.

More information about the Charity is here:

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Friends of Speckled Wood Management Trust & HBPS raise concerns with Lord Atkin and the Home Secretary
Friends of Speckled Wood Management Trust & HBPS raise concerns with Lord Atkin and the Home 
Secretary13 August 2016

The meeting was very successful and a lot of information was shared with Lord Atkin and the Home Secretary. The Home Secretary Amber Rudd MP agreed that she would help and an action plan has been established. The Charity is hoping to hear back from this in a few weeks to see what their next course of action is going to be. The matter is hopeing to Save Speckled Wood as the Charity has been fighting to Save this area for the Wildlife and Children that use this area  since 2012.

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Judicial Appointments & Conduct Ombudsman will investigate
Judicial Appointments & Conduct Ombudsman will investigate.
4th August 2016
The Judicial Appointments & Conduct Ombudsman confirmed by telephone  today that it will investigate the Chamber President in regard to the decision that his office was investigating with the missing Planning Inspectors Report which was requested from the Council two and a half years ago and has still not been forthcoming .

The matter reached the First Tier Tribunal GRC & GRP Tribunal in January this year after a complaint was made to the ICO in regard to the Council holding or not holding this document from the Planning Inspectorate.  A twenty page report was sent to JACO the Communities and Local Government  Comittiee. and Ms Amber Rudd MP

"This was excellant news the chairman states as it was very kind of JACO to step in and help."

Mr Donald Wise of Hastings Badger Protection Society stated " I am totally ashamed that the Council has not produced what everyone was expecting to see."

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Speckled Wood Designation

Speckled Wood Designation
25th July 2016
Speckled Wood  is Currently Designation by Natural England: Priority Habitat Inventory - Deciduous Woodland (England), Woodland Improvement (England), National Forest Inventory (GB).

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£1.00 SALE FRIDAY 1st July 2016 @ Community shop Ore
The Community Chop £1.00 Sale on
Friday 1st July 2016.

The Community Shop in Ore , Hastings is having a £1.00 SALE for one day only . If you spend £10.00 there is free tea or coffee & cake in the gallery room. Please come and help support us . There will be a collecting tin for the charity in the shop. We would love your support.

For more information contact
Address: 313 Old London Rd, Hastings TN35 5LR
Phone: 01424 720400

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battle threatens "Natural England over its lack of monitoring of licences."
battle threatens "Natural England over its lack of monitoring of licences."
29th June 2016

On the 23rd June 2016 the MP Amber Rudd  wrote to two Directors of the Hastings Badger Protection Society in regard to the serious correspondence and breach of license terms particularly in the area of Kent and Sussex.

The matter has been passed to Dame Julie Mellor of The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman asking her to investigate and address the points of ten serious failings believed to be occurring.  The most serious being a breach of a former Decision Notice with regard to a piece of Land in Hastings which is part of Speckled Wood Estate.

What concerns the Hastings Badger protection Society is the proper enforcement procedure and advice which is causing cruely to protected wildlife.  Natural England is believed to have last taken publicised action in regard to wildlife crime in 2012. The Hastings Badger Protections Society believe this is not good enough.  

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Where is the Scrutiny?
Where is the Scrutiny?
17th June 2016

For several years the Friends of Speckled Wood have been sending concernes to to two Council email addresses these are email addresses or  .The Council Corporate and Democratic Services Officer Ms. Lisa Greathead said in a communication by email yesterday "I have checked with the Council’s IT Department and the email addresses you give are incorrect and therefore any emails you sent would not have been received.  There is no valid email address for Overview and Scrutiny Committee.  I have checked with the Council’s Complaints Officer and there is no record of any complaint being made by you in the last year in respect of this matter." Further to this she said that the Council Scruitiny commitee had met more than once here is a video link to the diary for the Overview and Scruitiny Committee  The Trust is unsure how the Overveiw and Scrutny is able to function with no contact points . This is quite unbelievable. 

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Parliamentory and Health Service Ombudsman Intervention Required
Parliamentory and Health Service Ombudsman Intervention Required 
14th June 2016 
A second referral has been made to MP Amber Rudd asking her to refer a matter in relation to NE handling of licenses in the Kent and Sussex areas. The communications details failings in monitoring of these licensees, and enforcement of the licenses. It is hoped that the Parliamentary Ombudsman will draw on the Church Street case which they dealt with and draw further conclusions.

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JCB Digs on five sites in Speckled Wood an Update
Inline image 1JCB Digs on five sites in Speckled Wood An Update.
4th May 2016

Today the matter was brought again to the attention of the Enforcement team who stated that a reputable company had commissioned the work It is clear the that the sites which were dug do not follow the route given by the gray haired man on this site He indicated the route would include knocking down a fully grow dree a wall which bordered onto Speckled Wood and that this pathway was proposed to go through the Speckled Wood Housing Estate. I would imagine that the residents of this estate will not welcome more cars parked in their estate to facilitate this pathways use.

If this indeed is the case why was the need for point D to be dug out as it is nowhere near the rest of the points or this route indicated by the gray haired man? 

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The Hastings Borough Council conflict goes to the First Tier Tribunal Service allocation.
The Hastings Borough Council conflict goes to the First Tier Tribunal Service allocation.

4th May 2016.

The matter between the conflicts of the two Information Commissioners Office Decision Notices was put before the First Tier Tribunal Service 16th December 2015 has now reached the point where it is to be allocated to a panel of Judges. The Tribunal Registrar and Judge in two CMN have determined that only one Decision Notice can be judged in one case. It is assumed the first case with the Planning Inspectorate is not therefore contested leaving only the Hastings Borough Council matter to be judged. This allocation paperwork has now been assembled by the First Tier Tribunal Service. The Circuit can take six weeks to assign this panel two of these weeks to date have already passed.

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A JCB in Speckled Wood today

3rd May 2016
A JCB in Speckled Wood today.
The first JCB digger enter Speckled wood today .I was told that this was for test holes for a proper 1:10 wheel chair access footpath. The two gentlemen the older with curly white hair told me he had been instructed to do this on this land by Ore Community Land Trust. 

When I asked him why these holes where 1m deep he winked at the digger chap and siad this was a test pit for a proper footpath. What is going on the Councilor Peter Chowney has told us in his election documents delivered through teh door that the Council will CPO and protect the site Speckled Wood.  I asked him who owned the land he was digging holes in and he could not tell me and told me they had to get on with what they was doing.

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HBC Cabinet Meeting - Planning Department Review
HBC Cabinet Meeting - Planning Department Review
20th January 2016
A motion proposed by Cllr Atkins to have a review of the Planning Department will be decided at Cabinet on Monday 1st February at 18:00 at Stade Hall, The Stade, Hastings, East Sussex, TN34 3FJ
Members and supporters are invited to attend this meeting to witness the debate. Please come along we really need to show support for this motion . If the Council really feel there is no wrong doing by thier Planning Department they will let the review happen and allow it to hear the evidence.

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The Hastings Borough Council conflict goes to the First Tier Tribunal Service
The Hastings Borough Council conflict goes to the First Tier Tribunal Service.
30th December 15

The matter between the conflicts of the two Information Commissioners Office Decision Notices was put before the First Tier Tribunal Service today 16th December 2015. It is hoped that there will be a Judicial Decision on these two Decision Notices sometime in April 2016.

The Chairman of the  Friends of Speckled Wood Management Trust  & Charity has personally taken the matter to the Tribunal Service . The thorny issue deals with the legitimacy of the Council latest Inspectors Development Management Plan for which £59,000 was paid to the Planning Inspectorate to provide a Development Management Plan written by the Inspector as detailed in ID/1 of the Planning Examination Documentation.

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Parliamentory Ombudsman assigns an Inspector
4th November 2015 

The Trust and Charity were informed yesterday that the Parliamentary Ombudsman had assigned an Investigator to look into the concerns in regard to Natural England and the advice that has been given by their Wildlife Officer. The Trusts and Charity have been complaining that the site at Church Street had not been recognized properly and that incorrect diagnosis was given to the Police and other Agencies.

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New Complaint to Ombudsman

4th November 2015.
The Trust and Charity made a complaint to the Ombudsman yesterday in respect to the Councils handling of the Development Management Plan Process. 

Every opportunity in 126 days had been given to the Council to provide a genuine authenticatable legally compliant copy of Richard E Hollox's the Planning Inspector Report. 

The only document being provided was a Report created on a Forward Planning computer and signed by a font used by the  user of this computer to sign thier letters.

The Council promised during the Cabinet meeting October 2012 that they would defer to the Planning Inspector to make this decision. The Friends of Speckled Wood and other groups placing a strong case and the Planning Inspector welcoming the Woodland to be kept for educational and wildlife and that it was a beautiful area that should be able to be used by the local Public. No documents have been provide as part of an update to the Green network Infrastructure and no Legally Compliant Report has been provided .   A Ninty two page report was also sent to the Ombudsman at the same time. The response from the Council when told about this situation stated "It is quite inconcievable,  that the Report having been recieved from the Planning Inspectorate is anything other than genuine." It is clear a ruling from the ICO has stated that a genuine report which was  authenticatable was correctly  stated as not beig held by tthe Planning Inspectorate.

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