SWINDON Council is taking a developer to the Supreme Court over an issue with its New Eastern Villages project.

It is all because the council wants the main access roads through Symmetry Park to be a public highway.

It has been a long-running issue between the council and the landowners DB Symmetry.

At the moment there is no date for any hearing, but it is likely to be towards of the middle of the year.

The New Eastern Villages will consist of 8,000 homes, new schools, employment spaces and community and leisure facilities.

Located to the east of the A419, it is estimated to span 724 hectares, with its eastern boundary reaching the point at which the River Cole meets the A420.

Gary Sumner, who is deputy leader of Swindon Borough Council and cabinet member for strategic infrastructure, transport and planning, said: “While both parties are actively working together to come to a mutually acceptable solution, because of the highly technical nature of the issue involved this is still ongoing.

“In simple terms the courts have been asked to consider how a local planning authority can require dedication of land as public highway through legal agreements associated with new development.

“It is clear that the courts have a diverse understanding of the issues involved here.

The council was successful in the High Court but was ruled against when the case was taken to the Court of Appeal.

Coun Sumner added: “The Supreme Court has agreed that there is an arguable issue here and has agreed to consider the technical issues again.

“The matter is important to the council as it sees the main access roads through Symmetry Park being public highway as important to the New Eastern Villages project.

“Given ongoing discussion with the landowners of these roads the Council is confident, notwithstanding the court action, that a solution can be achieved to deliver this. Pursuing the legal route will, of course, incur a cost for the council, but given the importance of the New Eastern Villages project to housing delivery for Swindon this is a necessary step.

“If the Council is successful it will be able to seek costs from the other side but hopefully the ongoing discussion will avoid this.”

Tritax Symmetry, formed after Tritax Big Box bought DB Symmetry was contacted for comment.