Campaign group Save St Albans: Fight the Freight expect a decision "early next year" regarding their Judicial Review into the sale of former Radlett Airfield land to make way for a new rail freight terminal.

In June, Hertfordshire County Council sold the Green Belt land to rail freight developers Segro, with planning permission already granted by former secretary of state, Eric Pickles.

Since the sale, the campaign group have been looking at ways to prevent the development, and finally lodged a legal challenge in September.

Save St Albans: Fight the Freight believe that previous legislation proves that the 300-acre site had been designated "permanent open space" which should not be developed.

Cllr Nuala Webb, one of the campaign leaders, said: "We believe we have a strong and arguable case supported by documents dating back more than 70 years.

Herts Advertiser: Protesters outside Hertfordshire County Council.Protesters outside Hertfordshire County Council. (Image: Dee Young)

"We have shown that covenants and statutes show the land is protected as permanent open space. Indeed from what we’ve seen Herts’ own records support this. 

"They bought the land for just £1 in the mid 1989s. No landowners would sell for such a sum if there was future development value."

The Fight the Freight campaigners have also set up a group of local experts to monitor work currently being carried out on and around the site by the developers. 

Terrie Smith, of Save St Albans: Fight the Freight, continued: "Even though the sale could be reversed by judicial review, the developers and their contractors have been carrying out survey work and preliminary excavations, which is already causing a nuisance and a disturbance to people living nearby.


"We have put together a group of experts with specialists knowledge in areas such as rights of way and nature and the environment, to monitor the impact on wildlife, the local area and local people, and make sure the developers comply  with the strict planning regulations that were set out when planning was approved.

"We will also be monitoring the impact on traffic volumes, pollution, impact on the River Ver and local communities.

Herts Advertiser: A sign created by the campaign group.A sign created by the campaign group. (Image: Dee Young)

"The site is also of great archaeological interest, especially with the number of Roman runs in the area, so we have experts keeping a close eye on anything the excavators may uncover."