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Latest legal challenge to new Velindre cancer centre rejected

A RECOVERING breast cancer patient has lost her latest legal challenge against a new cancer centre due to be built on a wildlife haven in Cardiff.

Cat Lewis, who has been treated for the illness at Velindre, has been campaigning against the development.

In September, a High Court judge refused her application for permission to proceed to a judicial review against the Welsh Government over plans to build a new cancer centre on an area known as the Northern Meadows in Whitchurch.

And her latest attempt to launch a judicial review has now also been rejected. You can read about the background to this case here

Barry And District News: The plans have angered many local residents. Source: Alex SeabrookThe plans have angered many local residents. Source: Alex Seabrook

A spokesperson from the Save the Northern Meadows campaign told The National: “The decision shows how weak Welsh environmental law really is.

“It shows that politicians – regardless of the Environment (Wales) Act and the Wellbeing of Future Generations Act – will not be held accountable or responsible for environmental destruction, and do not have to consider sustainable development in all they do.”

In a statement to The National, the Velindre NHS Trust said: “We welcome today’s decision by the Court. We remain committed to delivering and improving non-surgical tertiary cancer services for the population of south east Wales.”

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In September, Ms Lewis, who lives on the Hollybush estate, which neighbours the meadow, was told she should pay the Welsh Government’s and Velindre NHS Trust’s legal costs which, to date, amount to more than £46,000. 

Last month, campaigners, including Ms Lewis, gathered at the site to prevent contractors from clearing vegetation. Two women were arrested during the protest. 

Barry And District News: An artist's impression of the new Velindre Cancer Centre site. Source: Velindre NHS TrustAn artist’s impression of the new Velindre Cancer Centre site. Source: Velindre NHS Trust

Construction work for the new Velindre Cancer Centre is due to start in March 2023, taking around two years, and is likely to open in summer 2025. 

The Welsh Government signed off the outline business case in March earlier this year, while planning permission was granted by Cardiff Council in 2017. 

  • This article originally appeared on our sister site The National.

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