Woman loses battle against St Andrews expansion
Penny Uprichard, a pensioner, has incurred legal costs of £179,000 during her exhaustive court battle against a proposed development on the outskirts of the town.
Fife Council now looks set to press ahead with plans for 1,090 new houses, a science park, a business park and transport links.
Rejecting her appeal, the UK’s highest court said the case was “not an appropriate use” of its time. Afterwards, Ms Uprichard said: “The judgment is very bad news for landscape protection.
“I believe the [planning] system has become almost totalitarian, where there is little opportunity to question, much less oppose, proposals by officials at all levels.
“To be unable to challenge decisions, except by risking enormous amounts of money, is not democracy.”
Although Ms Uprichard faces a hefty legal bill, she won a protective costs order at the Supreme Court, limiting her additional expenses to just £6,000, split equally between Fife Council and the Scottish Government.
She has raised £33,000 through her campaign, Saving St Andrews – £23,000 of which is still held in a fighting fund.
She has paid off almost half of her Scottish court bill, with about £90,000 outstanding, and will meet with her lawyers to discuss whether there is any scope to appeal against some of the remaining costs.
The Scottish Government and council welcomed the verdict.