Section of Therfield Heath declared an Asset of Community Value
- Credit: David Hatton
The part of Therfield Heath and Greens that was the subject of a public inquiry last year has been declared an Asset of Community Value by North Herts District Council.
NHDC has accepted a nomination by a group of residents, the Royston Hills and Lanes Action Group, for the common land at the junction of Briary Lane and Sun Hill, and it will remain on the AoCV list for five years.
At the public inquiry, it was decided that the land – which is the only part of Therfield Heath to fall within Royston – should not be deregistered and sold for housing as per an application by the trustees of the Therfield Regulation Trust, who are also Conservators of Therfield Heath and Greens.
If the trustees oppose this AoCV nomination, they have a right to request a review of the decision within eight weeks of when notice was given.
An Asset of Community Value gives land or property additional protection from development under the Localism Act 2011.
Voluntary and community organisations can nominate an asset to be included on their local authority’s register of asset of community value.
Royston Hills and Lanes Action Group member Don Shewan said: “Local Royston residents made the request to help protect the heath from housing development, loss of common land and the wish to protect this well-used part of Therfield Heath.
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“The owner of the nominated Asset of Community Value can no longer keep people in the dark and must inform the local authority if they wish to sell the asset.”
The listing of a property as an ‘Asset of Community Value’ lasts for five years after which it is automatically delisted and the restrictions imposed by the covenant are removed. Communities can, however, apply for the listing to be renewed as an Asset of Community Value.
A district council spokeswoman told the Crow: “The council received an application from a community group to register this area of land as an Asset of Community Value. Having considered the information put forward by the group and the representations of the owner, it was decided that the land should be listed as an Asset of Community Value.”
The Crow contacted the conservators for comment, and Clerk David Smith said: “The conservators have their monthly meeting on Thursday and will decide then on their response.”