Clameur de Haro raised at Havelet is refused
A ST PETER PORT douzenier’s attempt to invoke an ancient legal injunction against changes to the road layout at Les Echelons was thrown out yesterday.
Rosie Henderson dropped to her knees outside the Havelet Waters development yesterday morning and read out the Clameur de Haro – a Norman custom of crying for justice, which means all actions must stop until the matter is ruled on by a court.
Her bid to halt the development was motivated by concerns about vehicle and pedestrian safety, while she felt the whole process leading up to the development had been ‘under-handed’.
However, her submission to the Greffe was rejected by Judge Russell Finch, as the clameur can only be used by someone to prevent interference in ‘an immoveable object’ in their possession.
Mrs Henderson said she had raised the clameur on the basis the States hold the land for the people, but this was dismissed.
The former Guernsey Brewery site is being developed by Comprop, who received permission in the Royal Court last month to create a footpath and landscaping outside the development.
However, it proved controversial as it involves closing a section of the public highway at Les Echelons, while some people who attended an open-air meeting to state their objections later said they were unaware they could also raise these in court.
Mrs Henderson had previously signalled her intent to appeal against the court ruling due to the way the process had been handled, describing it as ‘a travesty of justice’.
‘This development forms a precedent – if I decide I would like to extend my parking area into the main road, would they allow it?’ she said yesterday morning.
She raised concerns about the danger she thinks the changes will cause at the junction at the bottom of Le Val des Terres and at the entrance to Les Echelons.
‘Havelet Waters is situated at a crossroad at the bottom of a main arterial route into St Peter Port,’ she said in her submission.
‘The point of egress from La Vallette is already a difficult junction for motorists with poor sightlines up the Val de Terres.
‘There is also Havelet, which feeds into the junction. At present, the entrance to Les Echelons is a slow curve, however, with the new planting and flower beds this entrance will become a much more aggressive turn.’
She also felt that the plan for the development had been subject to ongoing revision without consultation.
‘I am led to understand that the plan passed by the Committee for Environment & Infrastructure was amendment F.
‘However, the plan presented to the Royal Court [last month] was Plan M.’
‘Therefore, the committee has not actually passed amendments G – L.
‘I cannot believe that this was not necessary prior to consideration by the Royal Court.
‘To pass the amendments retrospectively after a Royal Court decision is making a mockery of the whole system.’
Regarding the road layout changes themselves, she said the accessibility functions at the South Plantation were not up to scratch under the proposed changes.
She raised the clamour at 9am, where she was joined by witnesses Dave Hadley and Michael Henderson and other supporters who were on-scene during the reading.
On-site workers moved off the site, but were seen returning at around 10.30 to recommence work outside the development.
The clameur was registered with the Greffe in the afternoon and refused shortly afterwards.