Essex woodland protected as village green

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Ancient woodland north of Coombe Wood in Thundersley, Essex, has been registered as a village green by Essex County Council.  The society has given support and advice to the applicant, Friends of Coombe Wood, over many years.

The Friends succeeded in registering part of Coombe Wood in 2007, but the northern part was excluded.  The Friends reapplied with new evidence for that area and at last the county council has agreed to register that as well.

Says Nicola Hodgson, our case officer: ‘It is excellent news that the whole of this wonderful, ancient wood has now been registered and can be enjoyed by the public for ever more.

‘We congratulate the Friends of Coombe Wood for their persistence over a long period: it has certainly paid off.

‘However, other open spaces may not be so fortunate and the Growth and Infrastructure Bill, currently going through Parliament, will outlaw the registration of land as a green once it is threatened with development.  That will put many open spaces at risk—even if people can prove they have evidence that it should be a green.

‘We urge communities to identify now any land which may be eligible for registration as a green and to apply to register it before it’s too late.  Once the bill becomes law (probably later this month) you will have only two months in which to apply to register land which is threatened by development.’

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