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From: Jo Makepeace (
Subject: SchNEWS 599, Tuesday 14th August 2007
Date: Tue, 14 Aug 2007 16:31:25 +0100

Rospuda Valley development put on hold (Poland)

Good news and bad news for those fighting road developments in Poland. Work in Rospuda Valley to put tarmac though a primeval forest and heritage site (see SchNEWS 578) has been stopped for a European tribunal to consider the case, and the camp is taking a well earned break (just in case you were planning to go there on holiday).

And what is everybody's nightmare scenario upon returning home after a such a breakaway...? Been burgled? Squatted? Flooded? Kids had a wild party and scratched an antique table and then failed to find a furniture polisher in the Yellow Pages? No, none of the above for Alicja Ziemowit, one resident of Lodz, Poland, who arrived back home to discover that the local council had built a new road complete with traffic island in her back garden.

When she complained she was told that a change in the law meant that local council officials could now use private land for road building without consent or compensation. A council spokesman said, "I don't know why she is complaining, it is not a busy road, and she can still get to the back of her garden quite easily." She will surely enjoy relaxing on the hard shoulder and could now perhaps open a roadside stall to sell cappuccinos to workers at the new computer factory down the road.

Lodz Council added, humourlessly, "She still owns the land, it just has a road on it now."

It seems that politicians and the people are, as ever, Poles apart.

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