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Press Release
 
North East No Campaign
 
10 am 24th September...2004
 
IMMEDIATE
 
High Court Writ to be Served on Deputy Prime Minister by No Campaign
 
Following the notice served on the Rt. Hon Nick Raynsford yesterday and the failure of the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister to take any positive action to correct the factually incorrect leaflet 'Have Your Say' for all 1,900,000 voters in the North East Referendum, the North East No Campaign has been left with no choice but to launch an action in the High Court today.
 
Lawyers have prepared an application in the public interest for an emergency Injunction with papers to be lodged today at the Royal Courts of Justice. A writ will be served on John Prescott's Office of the Deputy Prime Minister.
 
Letters of objection requesting a full correction of the leaflet have been ignored by the ODPM, the Audit Commission and the Electoral Commission, leaving the No Campaign with no choice but to take this drastic and high profile step. The urgency is due to the fact that a partial correction is due to go out to only 220,000 households in the North East on Monday 27th September, yet the errors affect all 1,900,000 voters.
 
Lawyers at Cherie Blair's former chambers, 4-5 Grays Inn Square, Grays Inn, yesterday put Rt Hon Nick Raynsford on notice that the No Campaign would be taking this action. To see the copy of the notice click here.
 
The No Campaign's lawyers received a fax last night at 5.15pm from the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister requesting more time, and they have lawyers working on a response.
 
The papers will be lodged by Neil Herron and Colin Moran of the North East No Campaign along with their legal representatives at 2pm today at the Royal Courts of Justice in the Strand, London (bringing back memories of the Metric Martyrs Case and ironically this time the people putting the Government before the courts rather than vice versa).
 
Neil Herron states, " We have given the Deputy Prime Minister repeated opportunities to address the factually incorrect statement which gives  the impression that people will be elected under proportional representation. Also, the partial correction addressing the incorrect cost figure for local government reorganisation has been admitted BUT there needs to be a correction for everyone who received the leaflet, not just County Durham. The people across the whole of the North East cannot be expected to vote on the North East's future based on a misleading document. We do not wish to jeopardise the referendum, but a decision affecting ours and our children's future cannot be made without everyone having the correct information."
 
Colin Moran states, " The clock is ticking and we are aware that their lawyers are urgently working on a response to attempt to avoid court action. We hope that respect for the North East public's right to be informed and that a common sense solution would be in the best interests of everyone."
 
ENDS
 
Neil Herron
Campaign Director
North East No Campaign
48 Frederick Street
Sunderland
SR1 1NF
Tel. 0191 565 7143
www.northeastnocampaign.co.uk
 
Contacts
Neil Herron
Mob. 07776 202045
 
Colin Moran
Mob. 07802 448 635
 
Legal Representatives:
Tilbrook's, Quires Green, Willingale, Ongar, Essex CM5 0QP
Tel: 01277 896000  Fax: 01277 896050
 
Counsel:
Philip Coppel
4-5 Gray's Inn Square, Gray's Inn, London WC1R 5AH
Tel:    020 - 7670 1530 (direct)