The fate of three major A47 improvement schemes will be placed in the hands of judges next week, when an environmental campaigner's legal challenge comes before the Court of Appeal.

The future of dualling schemes for one of Norfolk's major roads - and the revamp of one of its busiest junctions - will be decided once and for all after judges hear climate activist Dr Andrew Boswell's appeal bid.

Great Yarmouth Mercury: The A47 between Blofield and North BurlinghamThe A47 between Blofield and North Burlingham (Image: National Highways)

Last year, after a two-day High Court hearing, judge Mrs Justice Thornton dismissed Dr Boswell's argument that the cumulative carbon impact of the A47 schemes had not been properly considered by the Department for Transport, when transport secretaries granted permission.

Great Yarmouth Mercury: Mrs Justice ThorntonMrs Justice Thornton (Image: Courts and Tribunals Judiciary)

But Dr Boswell, a former Green councillor at Norfolk County Council and Norwich City Council, requested the right to appeal, with his case centring on the carbon cumulation issue.

Great Yarmouth Mercury: Dr Andrew Boswell at the Royal Courts of Justice in LondonDr Andrew Boswell at the Royal Courts of Justice in London (Image: Dan Grimmer)

Lord Justice Coulson granted that appeal, saying: "The judge may well have been right in her conclusion, but I consider that the contrary case making up this single ground has a real prospect of success."

Dr Boswell's challenge has held up work to dual two sections of the A47 - from Blofield to North Burlingham and from Easton to North Tuddenham, plus a revamp of Thickthorn roundabout on the edge of Norwich.

Great Yarmouth Mercury: The Thickthorn roundaboutThe Thickthorn roundabout (Image: Mike Page)

National Highways - the government company responsible for the road - said it had caused several months of delays to the projects, pushing up the costs by tens of millions of pounds, because of construction cost inflation and legal fees.

But Dr Boswell says the London hearing on Tuesday is crucial to examine a "vital point of law of national importance".

Some preparatory work for the A47 schemes has been done, but the main dualling work is on hold pending the Court of Appeal decision.

After that, there are no further legal options for either Dr Boswell or the government to challenge or overturn whatever decision is made.

Council leader's apology after blunder

The leader of Norfolk County Council has apologised after giving out "incorrect information" in remarks she made about Dr Boswell - only to make a further mistake in saying sorry.

Great Yarmouth Mercury: Norfolk County Council leader Kay Mason BilligNorfolk County Council leader Kay Mason Billig (Image: Norfolk County Council)

In November, Kay Mason Billig, in response to a question about Dr Boswell's appeal, incorrectly said: "Dr Boswell himself is quoted as saying about the ruling of Judge Mrs Justice Thornton ‘the judge may well have been right in her conclusion’, which our Norfolk residents could very well read as admission and accepting of defeat on Dr Boswell’s behalf on this particular issue".

It was not Dr Boswell who remarked on how the judge may well have been right, it was Lord Justice Coulson, the judge who permitted his appeal.

At a council meeting on Wednesday, Mrs Mason Billig acknowledged the mistake, saying an officer had provided "incorrect information" and she was sorry if it distressed Dr Boswell.

However, she, again, wrongly attributed the comment, saying it had been made by Mrs Justice Thornton.

Following the meeting, when that was pointed out to her by a member of the public, she wrote to them, stating: "I can only apologise for this unfortunate situation where a further error occurred."