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The Skreen development site Google street view

We fight proposed development on Powys common

October 15, 2020

The society has objected to a planning application for a dwelling, garage, workshop, driveway and associated works on and adjacent to a common near Erwood in Powys. Mr Richard King of Skreen Cottage, Llandeilo Graban, has applied for the development with no mention of the fact that the land affected is a registered common, The Skreen,…

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Landscapes Review – what next?

October 8, 2020

Shoulder to shoulder with other influential NGO organisations including Campaign for National Parks, National Trust, Ramblers, RSPB, Youth Hostels Association, CPRE, The Wildlife Trusts and the British Mountaineering Council, and now a year since the publication of the Landscapes Review, we have written to Rt Hon George Eustice MP, Secretary of State for the Environment,…

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We fight unfair land-swap at Clyne Common

September 22, 2020

As Britain’s leading pressure-group for common land [1], we are angry that the Duke of Beaufort’s Somerset Trust, the owner of part of Clyne Common, south-west of Swansea, has reapplied for a land swap, having withdrawn a similar controversial application in April. The trustees of the Somerset Trust have applied to the Welsh environment minister,…

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Agricultural grants must be properly enforced

September 8, 2020

We have criticised as weak and ineffective the government’s proposals for monitoring and enforcing compliance with agricultural grants.   In its consultation, Financial Assistance Statutory Instrument, the government proposes to monitor the use of public funds for delivering public goods as part of the new agricultural grant programme post Brexit.  However, it only proposes to…

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Open Spaces Society fights stopping up of public highway in Mumbles

September 7, 2020

We have objected to plans by the Welsh Government to stop up a public highway on the foreshore side of Oyster Wharf at Mumbles, Swansea. The Transport Orders Branch of the Welsh Government has made an order under section 247 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 to stop up the highway—but it can…

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Minister refuses to extend deadline for registering common land

September 3, 2020

We are dismayed that environment minister John Gardiner has refused to extend the deadline for re-registering lost commons beyond the end of December 2020. The society is concerned that, in seven English local authority areas1, the deadline for registering lost commons is 31 December, less than four months away.  The research to uncover lost commons…

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We call for promotion of access at heart of future agricultural support

August 21, 2020

We have called for public access to form a core component of future agricultural support. Responding to Defra’s Environmental Land Management policy discussion document, the society says that ‘the public must be able to see, enjoy and learn from what is achieved with spending raised from their taxes.’  It has proposed that public spending on…

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Expanding our freedoms

August 21, 2020

The Open Spaces Society has long campaigned for responsible freedom to roam away from public paths in England and Wales.  The Countryside and Rights of Way (CROW) Act 2000 went some way towards achieving this, but the rights were only for walkers and were limited to registered commons, and mapped areas of mountain, moor, heath…

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Boost for Neighbourhood Planning Groups

August 13, 2020

Following the launch earlier this month of the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government’s  Planning for the Future consultation, funding in the form of grants made to community groups involved with shaping their local planning policy  is set to almost double. Government grants to individual neighbourhood planning groups in both urban and deprived areas…

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Last chance for Forty Acres

August 11, 2020

Trudy Dean, chair of West Malling Parish Council, a member of the society, writes of the threat to a magnificent local open space. Forty Acres is a beautiful open area of gently rising farmland to the south of the A20 London Road in the Parish of East Malling and Larkfield in Kent. Confusingly running to…

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