The Latest News

Keeping up to date

During the Pub meeting on 16th January 2017, everyone said that they wanted to be kept informed of the latest developments relating to the applications and the Covenants that the Birtwells had agreed to sign.  


Please keep coming back to this page to be kept up to date on all developments. 

So close....

May 16, 2017

Objectors send Birtwells further revised draft Covenants in light of Opinion received from Counsel, together with a copy of the Opinion, accommodating fundamental change proposed by mediator in form in which Counsel advises it should work.  


The further draft also contains noise restrictions consistent with reports from Birtwells’ and Objectors’ noise experts.”

New instruction to Counsel

May 09, 2017

With the benefit of helpful input from the mediator as to the form of the Instructions to Counsel, these were sent on behalf of the Objectors in order to get Counsel’s Opinion as quickly as possible in light of the impending time limits and the inability of the Birtwells to confirm their joint instructions in time.”

Further work from the noise experts

May 01, 2017

Noise experts conduct further work on noise restrictions. Birtwell experts share their data with Objectors’ experts and Objectors’ experts devise amended noise proposal in light of all the tests conducted.”

Does the new changes work?

May 07, 2017

Objectors propose joint instructions to Counsel to get definitive ruling on whether the fundamental change not only gives the Birtwells greater protection but also actually works.

Birtwells decline to conclude the Covenants

May 06, 2017

Birtwells decline to conclude the Covenants without the fundamental change introduced by the mediator.

Further revised draft

May 04, 2017

Objectors send Birtwells further revised draft Covenants encompassing mediator amendments except one significant change for which there were legal issues.  Insofar as this was “some legal only parts of the Deed” as referred to by the Birtwell’s lawyers, it goes to the enforceability of the Covenants by the Objectors and is therefore more than just a matter of wording.

Noise levels and wording of the Deed

April 30, 2017

Birtwells’ lawyers confirm that all the principles of the Deed are agreed and it remains to agree the noise levels and the wording of some legal only parts of the Deed.

The Mediator

December 30, 2019

Mediator proposes a revised version of the Covenant to improve drafting and to give Birtwells greater protection

Objectors send Birtwells the revised draft Covenants in light of the agreements at the 20 April meeting

April 21, 2017

Last week of April and first week of May: further work on noise level restrictions by experts on both sides absent agreement from Birtwells to conduct tests jointly and share data.

The meeting

April 19, 2017

Further meeting between Objectors and the Birtwells with Glen James to try to finalise the terms of the Covenants. 

At request of the Birtwells, the Objectors agree to the meeting taking place at Holycombe.  The Objectors make further concessions and the terms are all finalised save an important and technical noise restriction arising out of the Birtwells’ noise report.  Noise experts are to meet and the Birtwells will press their mortgagees to agree also.

The Birtwells amend their planning application

April 18, 2017

The Birtwells amend their planning application to include their Noise Report.

Getting a new date for a meeting

April 10, 2017

The Objectors propose a meeting to try to finalise the draft Covenants.

Still finialising the draft Covenants

April 09, 2017

The Birtwells revert with more comments on the draft Covenants, confirm that the drafts are with their mortgagees but cannot be progressed any further until the final version has been agreed.

Lack of progress concerns the Objectors

April 05, 2017

Frustrations aired to Glen James

Noise report

April 05, 2017

The Birtwells provide their Noise Report in support of their application for planning permission.  It turns out their noise analysts were on site 16-19 March but the Objectors were unfortunately unaware.  The Birtwells say “there are some final details in the draft covenant that will require some further effort”.

Remaining issues?

March 27, 2017

The Objectors unsuccessfully press the Birtwells to identify any remaining issues and to confirm the mortgagees are onside

The Birtwells continue to campaign

March 23, 2017

The Birtwells press on with their campaign whilst the Objectors comply with request to hold off. 

Still outstanding issues...

March 21, 2017

The Birtwells say there are “one or two outstanding issues that remain after [the Objectors] last version of the Covenant”.

News on the mortgagees?

March 18, 2017

The Birtwells confirm that their mortgagees should “be approached immediately on the basis of the consensus already achieved”.

The Objectors produce a further revised draft

March 17, 2017

The Objectors produce a further revised draft to meet the newly raised concerns of the Birtwells.

The Birtwells raise new points

March 16, 2017

The Birtwells raise a raft of new points that “they should have raised before”.

The Birtwells raise a deal breaker on the Covenants

March 15, 2017

The Birtwells raise a deal breaker on the Covenants (which had been in the draft since the outset and not previously raised) and leave all other “semantic” points “until this fundamental point has been agreed”.  

Objectors resolve the “fundamental point” and press for receipt of the “semantic points”. 

Objectors continue to hold off their campaign

March 14, 2017

At request of the Birtwells, the objectors continue to keep their objections on hold to allow time for the Covenants to be agreed by the Birtwells and their mortgagees.


Objectors granted Rule 6 status enabling them to be represented in the Public Inquiry in October 2017.


Revised Covenants to meet the Birtwells’ concerns circulated

Mediation meeting

March 13, 2017

The parties met.  


The Birtwells lawyer announced at the beginning “There will be no Covenants”.  


With patience from the objectors and persistence from Glen James, things got back on track.  


Finally discussion of the contents of the draft Covenants which had been with the Birtwells since January 24, 2017, without receipt of a revised draft identifying their concerns.  


Extensive changes were requested by the Birtwells and conceded by the objectors, including:

no promise to return the use of the site to residential and agricultural and to apply for planning permission in same terms after 20 years or earlier if they sell before then (contrary to paras 1, 5 and 9(o) and (p) of Birtwell 18.11.06 letter to Glen James).  


Major restructuring of Covenants to meet concerns of the Birtwells.

Covenants Meeting date agreed

February 22, 2017

13th March – An agreed date was decided for the Birtwells and their lawyer to meet with concerned parties to agree the Covenants with Glen James acting as a mediator.

Andy and Sally lodge an appeal

February 06, 2017

The Birtwells have lodged an appeal against the Enforcement Notice and requested that the issues be considered at a Public Inquiry by an independent Planning Inspector.

Whilst a planning inquiry will allow all arguments to be heard in public forum and in the full glare of the media, we hope that the covenants can be signed up to so we can achieve consensus on the way forward.

The Birtwells amended the planning application to exclude weddings again and Objectors press for detail of what issues arise on the draft Covenant other than the misunderstanding over meaning of curfew mentioned by the Birtwells at PCC EGM.

Extraordinary Meeting of the Parish Council

February 04, 2017

The Birtwells said wording of Covenants was broadly agreed and anticipated acceptable agreement in the near future.  


The Birtwell lawyer confirmed: “You have suggested, and Mr Birtwell has agreed, that these measures of control should be by way of an agreement between the parties. This is not an unusual situation.”

Getting the Mortgagees on board

February 02, 2017

Objectors and Glen James pressed the Birtwells to involve their lenders who will need to sign Covenants also, to ensure they are on side. 


February 01, 2017

The Birtwells confirmed that they were seeing their lawyers that day so should be able to move things along.

Parish Council Meeting

January 28, 2017

The Birtwells re-confirmed that they would sign the Covenants and they saw no reason why they should not be signed within a very short period. The Birtwells confirmed that amendment of 16 December 2016 to add in commercial weddings to the planning application was a mistake. 

Whichford and Ascott in the National Press

January 26, 2017

Again, news of Holycombe House and the Campsite made it into the press. Unwelcome attention and negative comments made about individuals was not very kind. Utmost urgency to get the Covenants agreed and signed. 


Covenant Draft

January 24, 2017

Draft Deed of Covenant provided to the Birtwells 

Meeting at the Norman Knight

January 16, 2017

In response to the Enforcement Notice by the Stratford District Council, Sally and Andy invite supporters to the pub to discuss the latest at Holycombe and the Campsite. Glen James explains the proposed compromise and they declare that they will sign the Covenants. Link

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