Celebrate our success!

Town Green status was awarded to Ely Common by Cambridge County Council on 12 December 2013. This gives legal protection to the Common and confirms people’s right to enjoy all of the Common for legal uses and pastimes. We are absolutely delighted. It has been a long hard battle but now we really can celebrate.

Meeting at Lisle Lane gate for a walk across the Common

Profuse thanks must go to Frank Richards who has seen this campaign through from beginning to end, through two Public Inquiries, a mountain of paperwork and a seemingly endless stream of legal jargon. We are deeply indebted to all the witnesses who stood up to rigorous cross-examination by barristers, and to the many users of the Common who provided invaluable written evidence. We would like to thank Cain Ormondroyd (our barrister) for his excellent presentation of our case, and Susan Ring (our solicitor). None of this would have been possible without very many people’s generous financial support – and donations of art and promises – that meant we could pay our legal team. And we thank all our members and friends who have given their time, energy and help. Last, we are deeply grateful to the Supreme Court judges who ruled that “deferring to a tractor” was “behaving with courtesy and common sense” rather than ceding our right of access. This crucial ruling allowed us to re-apply for Town/Village Green status after our first application failed.

We hope you will share in our delight at finally obtaining long-term protection for Ely Common. Please celebrate with us on Saturday 14 December – by visiting our market stall in the morning or joining us at 2.15 at the Lisle Lane gate for a walk across the Common, followed by a warming drink and cake in Ely Sailing Club. We would love to see you.