Melbury Abbas & Cann’s High Court action against Dorset County Council is to go ahead after the village’s fundraising efforts shot to more than £1,000 above its crowdfunding target of £5,000 with a day to spare.
By its deadline of 7 April villagers had raised £6,640 – and they are now well on the way to reaching their ultimate goal of raising £10,000.
The village is protesting that the county council conducted a ‘flawed’ public consultation last summer and ignored a request from both Dorset Police and the emergency services for a 1.5-tonne HGV restriction on the C13 through the village.
The result, claim villagers, is ‘the slow destruction’ of the village they have nicknamed ‘the village of the jammed.’
Chairman of Melbury Abbas & Cann parish council William Kenealy confirmed today the action against DCC ‘is going ahead – unless DCC backs down.’
He said DCC has had two opportunities to back down and has refused on both occasions. Villagers accept it is unlikely DCC will do so in the face of this latest challenge leaving them no alternative but to continue with their action.
‘It’s see you in court at this point,’ he said.
Villagers are keeping their crowdfunding appeal going and are hoping to reach their ‘stretch’ goal of £10,000.
‘There’s no time limit for hitting that figure and we’re not obliged to reach it, but of course we will do our best to get there,’ Mr Kenealy said.
The £6,640 raised by today’s date came from 80 people and contributors have included HGV drivers and members of the travelling public as well as local residents. £5,000 is the target that triggers an appeal to the High Court.
Villagers have now to wait for the High Court to return the claim form ‘sealed’. Once the papers are served DCC has 21 days to respond.