As you may already know, we have been running a little tea shop in Glasgow for 15 years, but now face the prospect of a large residential development that would force us to close. In the short term we are looking for donations to help cover the legal costs of a coming trial. In the long term, should we raise enough money, we would be considering relocation. We would be eternally grateful for any contribution you could offer. :)
Here is a summary of the situation so far:
After essentially being prevented from building their controversial blocks of flats on the Kelvin river bank by the amount of conditions attached to GCC permission to build (if my memory serves me there were a whopping 27 conditions some of them punitive) everthing went quiet for a while. This was thanks to the massive public support the Otago Lane community received. The developer Hugh Scott did make various appearances on the lane which were less than pleasant for customers and residents. Even this subsided. In June we realised that we had to carry out some routine but quite extensive maintenance to the veranda. Some agents for Hugh Scott tipped him off about what was happening resulting in his bringing us to court (after a couple of pretty unpleasant letters) and accusing us of building a new veranda. This was in order to force the ceasing of works on the veranda and its removal. Fortunately there is an unbelievable amount of evidence on the web and elsewhere as well as literally thousands of witnesses to say that the veranda has been there for far longer than a few months. We therefore managed to win the case with the help of Inksters law firm. This was the first financial hit as this case cost us over £1000. Now we are at court again. Due to the developer employing an advocate, we have had to match that. The aim is to stop us from using the veranda - an essential part of the shop not least because it is our only access. Why should he do this since he may not be able to build anyway? We know he could be very angry due to not being able to build easily a development that would have destroyed part of the Green corridor, the character of the area and the businesses on the lane. We also know that because Tchai-Ovna spearheaded the campaign, he might be particularly angry with us. He knows that we are a small business with only small means and that by forcing us to go to court he can financially hemorrhage our operations. It looks as though the legal case will run into tens of thousands of pounds. With us gone he will have got rid of a major thorn in his side and he can afford to do it. This is why we need as much financial help as possible in order to help fight this in the courts. If we win this will help secure Tchai-Ovna in Otago lane on the long term. If we lose not only will we be in total financial dire straights due to having to cover his costs, but we will in effect be put out of business. We have come as far as we can without asking people who support Tchai-Ovna and Otago Lane for financial help, but now we have no choice. We really appreciate any support you can give us, and are massively thankful for your help thus far otherwise Tchai-Ovna would long ago have ceased to exist and the Lane drastically changed for the worse.