Power to the people

PEOPLE power has succeeded over bureaucracy after a more than 16-month battle. The Templars Gate Residents Group – which represents residents on the Twigden estate in Royston – have had complaints upheld by the Local Government Ombudsman. And both North H

PEOPLE power has succeeded over bureaucracy after a more than 16-month battle.

The Templars Gate Residents Group - which represents residents on the Twigden estate in Royston - have had complaints upheld by the Local Government Ombudsman.

And both North HertsDistrict Council and Herts Council have had to pay compensation.

The group will receive £750 from the district council and £1,300 from the county council.


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Residents decided to take action after it emerged that planning obligations over the development of the estate had not been met.

- Failure to adopt the roads and associated open spaces.

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- Failure to provide a neighbourhood equipped area of play.

Residents' group chairman town councillor Robert Smith said he was "delighted" with the outcome.

"It still remains for the estate roads to be adopted by the county council and the play area to be installed," he said.

Cllr Smith said residents were "aggrieved" that they had been paying Council Tax for the past six years for the maintenance of roads.

The ombudsman, however, would not pass on their claim for compensation to the county council.

He added that the group would be monitoring the progress of the work, which is hoped is completed without further delay.

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