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The Friends of Jubilee Field have succeeded in getting a village meadow recorded as an Area of Community Value (ACV), and thus saved for local people to enjoy.
The 3.5-acre field is at Upper Boddington, ten miles south-west of Daventry in Northamptonshire. HS2 will run along the south side of the village, putting local green space at risk of development.
The parish council bought the field five years ago, but the community wanted to secure greater protection for it. Local people, led by Open Spaces Society member Debbie Turner, formed the Friends of Jubilee Field and applied to South Northamptonshire District Council to register the land as an ACV. The council has accepted this so now, if the land is to be sold, local people will be given six months in which to raise money and make a bid for it. The field is enjoyed by local people for informal recreation and is a treasured wildlife site.
Says Nicola Hodgson, our case officer: ‘We congratulate the Friends of Jubilee Field for getting this lovely meadow recorded as an ACV. This gives it much greater protection. ACVs are normally buildings and we believe it to be rare for an open space to be granted ACV status. The Friends have set an excellent example in protecting their open space in this way.’
Says Debbie Turner of the Friends of Jubilee Field: ‘We were anxious to protect our field and we researched the various ways to save it. ACV was recommended to us; it was not a difficult process although it took a bit of time. It was worth every second to receive the decision notice from South Northamptonshire Council and to learn that our field is now an ACV.
‘Not everyone in the parish is in favour of ACV but, in a world where the word “value” is often only related to money, the Friends of Jubilee Field firmly believe that the true value is the one this beautiful open space can give to the parish for generations to come.
‘If you want to protect a local open space, we urge you to try for ACV status,’ Debbie concludes.