Historic Aerial Photos Provide Crucial Evidence in ‘Village Green’ Dispute

April 03, 2012 -- Aerial images dating back more than twenty years have been used to resolve a dispute in the English seaside town of Broadstairs. Local residents had campaigned to have an area of wooded land close to the cricket club adopted as a village green. However, using aerial photographs from the OldAerialPhotos archive, an experienced photographic interpreter was able to dispute the claim by demonstrating insufficient evidence of use.

Bluesky supplied the accurately dated historic aerial photography from their OldAerialPhotos archive providing factual and unbiased evidence for further investigation by Bud Young of the practice Airphoto Interpretation.

Working on behalf of the owners of the two plots of contended land, Young presented evidence to the Planning Inspector, appointed by Kent County Council, at a Public Inquiry. A Chartered Landscape Architect and photographic interpreter with more than forty years’ experience of land use, Young was able to show, using the historic images, dense unusable woodland on one site and scarce evidence of path lines or other signs of public use that would be exhibited if the claim was valid. Other evidence came from documents and those who claimed to know the site; however invaluable detail was derived from the aerial images.

“By viewing the images in 3D you can get a real view of the past and uncover, or not, evidence to support claims of specific ownership or use,” commented Mr Young. “The Bluesky images are invaluable in cases such as these as they allow me to piece together all available clues without relying on hearsay or potentially biased witness statements. In this case there was simply not enough user evidence to support the claim on the land as a village green and the Inspector ruled in favour of our clients.”

The imagery supplied by Bluesky forms part of historically important archive that includes some of the earliest commercial aerial survey images, military photography from World War II and many national archives. Offering a record of most major UK cities and towns, transport and utility infrastructure and commercial property developments, the images are an invaluable resource for anyone with a personal or professional interest in local studies, genealogy, boundary disputes, environmental land use research or town planning.

Mr Young concluded, “In this instance we were able to secure a positive outcome for our clients using seven sets of photography. Ideally one would wish to find that a site has been photographed every year but that is a rarity though one recent case used 16 year dates most from OldAerialPhotos.”


Website: www.bluesky-world.com and www.oldaerialphotos.com
Bluesky Tel +44 (0)1530 518 518

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