Published On: 25th January 2024

High Court grants permission for a Judicial Review against Spurs’ plans.

Background

Since 2021, a group of Enfield residents have been fighting to stop their council leasing over 50% of public green space to Tottenham Hotspur Football Club and it’s ultra-wealthy owners.

With plans to expand their training grounds, the proposed development means that Enfield residents would lose access to land that has been in public hands for nearly a century. It would also require razing several acres of natural parkland to make way for training pitches and manicured gardens.

The legal case

The claimant, Sean Wilkinson, has been granted permission to bring Judicial Review proceedings in the High Court, starting on 6 February 2024.

Public space allows people to exercise, relax and gather to meet friends and family in the fresh air regardless of personal financial means. Whitewebbs Park has been in public trust for over a century, and is a richly biodiverse space. This kind of space is essential for mental and physical health; its provision can reduce health inequalities between wealthy and deprived communities.

We’re bringing the case on the following grounds:

  • The council cannot lawfully dispose of the park in the way proposed (to a private company for its own commercial purpose).
  • The disposal plans are not consistent with the “statutory purpose” of the land – which is to be held as open space land on trust for the public (a purpose for which it was acquired using public funds).
  • The council cannot use the funds it plans to generate from the sale in the way it proposes, and its decision is unlawfully influenced by this error.

How to support this case

A core part of PILCs work is to protect public land so that all people have access to this vital green, natural space – and keep public land in public hands.

Public land is not an asset to be bought or rented. PILC challenges the public bodies that are willing to sell off large swathes of public land in service of profit, not the community.

To ensure that our legal team can take this case through the full judicial review proceedings, we’re looking to raise £12,000 in less than two weeks. If you are able to support this case, you can do so here.