Councils in dispute over ownership of land in Yate

The car park outside St Mary's Church in Yate

The car park outside St Mary's Church in Yate

First published in News Gazette Series: Photograph of the Author by , reporter covering Yate, Chipping Sodbury, Winterbourne, Frampton Cotterell, Rangeworthy, Wickwar, Hawkesbury, Iron Acton, Coalpit Heath and Old Sodbury

A ROW over an area of land leading to a Yate primary school has broken out between the town council and the district authority.

Yate Town Council and South Gloucestershire Council are at odds over the ownership of land at St Mary’s Green, a car park area leading to St Mary’s Primary School.

The town council owns the land and says it has always been happy for the primary school to use the car park but does not want to dispose of the site. The dispute was sparked by South Gloucestershire Council’s application to register prescriptive rights to access the area. Town councillors were left furious by the move, which they have described as ‘hostile’.

They have written to the authority advising ‘that the town council was surprised that the application was lodged in such a hostile manner without prior discussion with the town council, which is not in keeping with the parish charter’.

Members say they have always allowed the school to use the land, with their permission, and are happy for the arrangement to continue. But they say they will oppose the application.

Cllr Chris Willmore said if all else failed, the Land Registry would be asked to step in.

"We are now getting to the point where the Land Registry will have to negotiate and will have to talk South Gloucestershire Council into negotiating," she said.

The town council’s solicitor has been asked to oppose the authority’s plans.

A South Gloucestershire Council spokesman said: "We can confirm that the council applied to register prescriptive rights in relation to the car park at St Mary's green. This was a routine application submitted according to normal procedure.

"The council will be meeting with Yate Town Council soon to review the application and discuss any associated issues."

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