Latest News

OSS Footpath to west of Hope-under-Dinmore footpath HD4

We save Shropshire footpath from diversion

November 19, 2019

We have saved 100 metres of a footpath at Berrington, about four miles south-east of Shrewsbury, from being moved. Shropshire Council promoted the proposal on behalf of the landowner. Because we objected to the formal order, it was referred to the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, and the Planning Inspectorate determined…

Read More

Mass protest against missing Thames-side footbridge at Fawley

November 19, 2019

On Saturday 16 November more than 150 people, from Henley-on-Thames and beyond, joined a rally to protest at the year-long closure of Fawley footpath 12 due to a missing footbridge at Fawley Court in Buckinghamshire. The closure is forcing walkers onto the dangerous A4155 Henley-to-Marlow road. The protest was organised by the Ramblers Henley and…

Read More

Missed opportunity to protect open spaces in Wales

November 14, 2019

We have responded to the Welsh government’s consultation on its National Development Framework (NDF) and raised concerns about the impact on the landscape and tourism, and the missed opportunities for protecting open space. The NDF is a new development plan which will set the direction for development in Wales from 2020 to 2040.  It contains…

Read More

The Ethical Gift

November 10, 2019

Would you like to find a present for outdoorsy friends or family with a conscience? Ethical and environmentally friendly gifts are increasingly popular and rightly so. The Open Spaces Society is a small charity that fights to conserve and promote our environment by seeking protection for paths and open spaces, so that everyone can enjoy…

Read More

We fight Henley Festival footpath closure

November 7, 2019

We have objected to plans by the Henley Festival for the temporary closure of the Thames Path National Trail in July 2020. Every year since 1998 the Festival has applied to Wokingham Borough Council, the highway authority, for the temporary closure of the path before, during and after the Festival—and the council has agreed. The…

Read More

Our case officer Nicola Hodgson celebrates 20 years with Open Spaces Society

November 7, 2019

In 1999, solicitor Nicola Hodgson was instructed by Sunningwell Parish Council, in Oxfordshire, to register a piece of land as a village green – thereby preventing two new houses being built on the site which had, for decades, been popular with families and dog walkers. The case went to the House of Lords, resulting in…

Read More

Welsh government must ensure new payments to farmers lead to better public access

November 7, 2019

We have called on the Welsh government to ensure that the payment of public money under the new Sustainable Land Management scheme will benefit the public who wish to gain access to Wales’s farmed land.  The society has responded to the Welsh government’s consultation paper Sustainable Farming and our Land. The society wishes to see…

Read More

Bullies beware!

October 31, 2019

Through our 154-year history, the Open Spaces Society has developed a proud record of legal action. We fought the enclosures, and defended commoners’ rights; we have tested the law in the courts many times. We have suffered losses, but we also have landmark victories to our name. One such victory was our challenge to Dorset…

Read More

We fight development on Hampshire common

October 29, 2019

We have objected to an application from Mr Christopher Ball to build three houses and an access road on Odiham Common in Hampshire. The land, at Potbridge, is registered common land. Any development on common land requires the consent of the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, in addition to any planning…

Read More

Our dismay at Durham County Council’s proposed common-land swap

October 29, 2019

We have objected strongly to an application from Durham County Council to deregister part of The Sands common in the city centre in order to build a new council headquarters, and to offer in exchange land to the north of the common but quite separate from it. The application, under section 16 of the Commons…

Read More