A GROUP of determined Inglewood residents is set to test Stirling council’s policy of not closing right of ways until there is unanimous support from adjoining residents.
ROWs are strips of common land at the rear of properties left over from the days when night soilmen would bring their carts to empty the pots of outdoor dunnies.
About a decade after the first failed attempt to close a ROW running parallel to Dundas and Normanby roads near Inglewood Primary School, the council has come up against a group of neighbours who refuse to be discouraged by the red tape they’ve faced.
It started in 2021 when a ratepayer asked the council to revisit the survey done a decade earlier as he believed most of those who were adamant it should remain open had since moved on.
Twenty five of his neighbours backed the closure, but four were still opposed and another five didn’t respond, which was taken as a kind of refusal.
The council told the group unanimous support was needed to progress the closure.
Undeterred, 14 of the landowners came back with a petition in March this year, complaining about crime and anti-social behaviour in the ROW, including finding drug paraphernalia, fires, noise, trespassing and burglaries.
They were told to go back and get their neighbour’s approval, but instead have continued to make regular deputations; to the point council officers have now found a way to get it on the agenda so councillors can deal with it.
“Where unanimous consent is not obtained, in limited circumstances, council may still choose to consider an application for closure and formally advertise the proposal for comment,” a report to this week’s meeting said.
“Under the circumstances, to allow the closure request to be formally discussed and considered by council, approval is sought to advertise the proposal in accordance with Section 52 of the Land Administration Act 1997.”
If it gets up at this week’s meeting, the closure would go before the WA Planning Commission – which might still say no if everyone’s not agreeing.