All those who live in or visit Mistley welcome the decision of the Development and Regulation Committee of Essex County Council to declare Mistley Quay as a Village Green. On 25 July the recommendations of Mr Alun Aylesbury, the Inspector appointed by ECC to examine the issue at an 8-day public Inquiry last year, were accepted in full. Consideration of the recommendations had been delayed further by extensive representations by TWL, the owner of the Quay, who have consistently opposed the Village Green Application made in 2010, subsequent to the Inquiry. All the issues raised after the Inquiry by TWL where rejected by the Inspector.Mr Ian Tucker who made the application and who has lived on Mistley Quay for more than 25 years said: “This is wonderful news. Six years after the fence was erected on the Quay we now have recognition that the Quay has been used for many, many years by the people of Mistley for recreational and leisure purposes”.
Simon Bullimore, Chairman of Free the Quay, the local community group which has led the fight for the recognition of Mistley Quay as a Village Green, said: “Some people doubted that we would ever succeed in applying for registration of a quay as the Village Green but the important role that spaces such as Mistley Quay play in the recreational and leisure pursuits so important to the lives of people who live in the area has now been recognised.” He added: “Now that the Quay is a Village Green we will take steps to have the fence removed from the Quay as it clearly interferes with the enjoyment of the Village Green. I cannot say when this will happen but I do say that it will”.
The campaign for registration of the Village Green has been supported by the whole of the community in Mistley and far and wide by others who love the view down the river from Mistley Quay. Free the Quay have repeatedly offered to co-operate with TWL and the relevant conservation authorities in reaching agreement on a barrier meeting the aesthetic and safety requirements of all interested parties. TWL has consistently declined to enter into a dialogue.
Nancy Bell who has lived on the Quay for more than 14 years said: “We cannot understand why TWL should consistently refuse to talk to us about an acceptable form of barrier. My three children have grown up on the Quay and we all share the reasonable Health and Safety concerns of TWL. Why will they not talk to their neighbours? Now the Quay is a Village Green we all hope that they will”.