Action Corn Exchange group granted a review

A GROUP fighting for the St Ives Corn Exchange to be retained for public use has been granted a review of a town council decision to reject its proposal to save it. But Action Corn Exchange says that it may not take up the option to challenge the decision

A GROUP fighting for the St Ives Corn Exchange to be retained for public use has been granted a review of a town council decision to reject its proposal to save it.

But Action Corn Exchange says that it may not take up the option to challenge the decision as a local businessman has stepped in to help the building.

The Corn Exchange, which dates from the 19th century, closed in 2001 due to structural concerns.

Last year, St Ives town council mooted the idea of selling the building to the highest bidder, prompting the formation of Action Corn Exchange.


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The group put forward a proposal to restore the building in May 2007, but it was turned down by town councillors.

However, a High Court judge has now ruled that this decision can be re-examined by judicial review. While this does not necessarily mean that the decision was flawed, the judge accepted that ACE's complaint merits a hearing.

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The group, however, hopes sufficient progress will be made at the town council's meeting next January to make further involvement of the High Court unnecessary, but it is reserving its right to press ahead with a full hearing, said ACE co-chairman Nick Dibben.

The group is not at present pressing the town council for the legal costs it has racked up so far. If the case were to go to a full hearing, the losing side would be likely to be liable for all costs of the case, including this month's preliminary hearing.

The town council and town mayor, Councillor Deborah Reynolds, could not be contacted for comment on Friday.

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