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Derwent appeal pushes Lancs to the brink

Club cancels AGM amid new legal challenge

Published on March 29th 2011.

Derwent appeal pushes Lancs to the brink

DERWENT Holdings will appeal the recent High Court decision backing plans to redevelop Lancashire County Cricket Club’s Old Trafford stadium.

‘The commercial motivations behind Derwent choosing to continue this litigation are unclear as it would appear to us that Derwent has nothing to gain.’

The club has now been forced to postpone its Annual General Meeting, which was due to take place on April 13, as it prepares for another legal wrangle, which may threaten the financial future of the club.

Derwent was told by the High Court there were no grounds to appeal this month’s decision. Now it is seeking to overturn that refusal through the Court of Appeal.LCCC chief executive Jim Cumbes said cancelling the AGM was ‘unprecedented’ but could not take place against a backdrop of uncertainty.

The club also said the legal battle was causing ‘a major drain’ on its finances and there is also a risk of missing deadlines for public sector funds from the Northwest Development Agency.

"Despite being defeated emphatically in the High Court, we have been forced to take the unprecedented action of cancelling our proposed AGM, pending the outcome of this latest legal threat,” said Cumbes.

“Derwent have made so many attempts to derail our project and have been thwarted convincingly at every stage. We remain totally confident that, although they will attempt absolutely everything due to a seemingly unlimited financial resources, that we shall succeed eventually."

"We promised," continued Cumbes, "that we will secure a new international cricket ground and bring huge benefits to both the local and regional community and economy. We’ve been supported on our long journey by Trafford Council, councils across Greater Manchester and by the wider business community.”

Ask Developments director Alan Burke, the club’s development partner, said: “If this matter ever reaches the Court of Appeal we are confident that it will endorse the legality of Trafford Council's decision to grant planning consent to our scheme in March 2010, as was the judgement reached by the Secretary of State and the High Court.

“It is the further delays that this latest threat poses to our ability to get on site and successfully bid for the 2013 Ashes that remains our constant worry. The commercial motivations behind Derwent choosing to continue this litigation are unclear as it would appear to us that Derwent has nothing to gain.”

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AnonymousMarch 30th 2011.

Half a story, and a very unbalanced item.

Derwent doesn't give two hoots what LCCC does to its ground.

LCCC is in league with a rival supermarket to the one involved in Derwent's proposals.

JonMarch 30th 2011.

Agree with Anonymous. It's one thing to give a bias towards one argument in your opinion-led columns; but doing this in "news items" is just totally disingenuous.

Are ManCon earmarked a box in the redeveloped ground ...? ;-)

EditorialMarch 30th 2011.


Or alternatively, we've reported the decision of Derwent to challenge and how Lancs feel about that. We'd refute any claim that this piece backs one side or the other.

There'll be an opinion-led piece on this issue shortly, but at the moment, we'll just continue to track the events in this case as they happen.

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