Latest News

Placemaking Wales Charter First Year Anniversary

October 14, 2021

A year on since  the Welsh government and the Design Commission for Wales collaborated with the Placemaking Wales partnership to support the development of high-quality places, there are just short of 100 signatories from the public, private and not for profit sector that share this committment for the people of Wales. As one of those…

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Our new advocate in Northamptonshire and Ceredigion

September 28, 2021

We have appointed Gerald Davies as our local correspondent for the old Daventry district of Northamptonshire, and five communities in Ceredigion.  It may seem a strange combination but while Gerald lives in Brixworth, about five miles north of Northampton, his heart is in mid Wales. Gerald was raised on a farm in mid Wales and…

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Battlemead Common with view of Cliveden which can be seen from the proposed path

We call for creation of final link for Maidenhead trail

August 3, 2021

We have called on Windsor and Maidenhead Council to incorporate a permanent, direct path across Battlemead Common, on the north-east side of Maidenhead, into the popular Maidenhead Millennium Walk. Currently walkers are denied access across this magnificent open space and forced to walk around the edge.  The land is owned by the council. The Millennium…

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1871 poster

150 years ago today – the story of the Wanstead Flats landmark demonstration

July 8, 2021

150 years ago today, on 8th July 1871, thousands of people gathered in Epping Forest to mount a protest. A campaign was beginning – one that the renowned environmental historian Oliver Rackham has called “the origin of the modern British conservation movement.” This campaign, to preserve Epping Forest and other commons from unchecked housing development…

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Hampstead Heath in summer

Hampstead Heath’s milestone Act of Parliament

June 29, 2021

Today, 29 June, is the 150th anniversary of the Hampstead Heath Act 1871, which empowered the Metropolitan Board of Works (MBW) to purchase the Heath for the people.  Now the Heath belongs to the City of London Corporation and is managed for the benefit of the public. We are proud to have played a major…

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Government’s response to Glover Review is lacklustre

June 24, 2021

The Open Spaces Society is disappointed at the government’s initial response to the Glover Review on England’s protected landscapes.  This response is long overdue. The report, written by a panel led by Julian Glover, contains ambitious proposals.  It was published in September 2019 and the then environment secretary, Theresa Villiers, welcomed the findings.  Today the…

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Illustrative photo of the mast from the developer’s design and access statement

We fight ugly mast on Pumlumon common

June 22, 2021

We have objected to plans for an ugly mast on Eisteddfa Gurig Common, on the slopes of Pumlumon in Ceredigion. The society is supporting the Cambrian Mountains Society (CMS) which has also submitted a strong objection. Lluest y Gwynt Wind Farm Ltd applied for an 80-metre-high, steel, meteorological monitoring mast and associated paraphernalia, for three…

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Defra undermined

June 10, 2021

Our general secretary, Kate Ashbrook, comments on the environment secretary’s recent announcements. The environment secretary George Eustice was on a high with his big announcements from Delamere Forest in Cheshire on 18 May. He grandly promised ‘to halt the decline of nature’ with a ‘legally-binding’ target for species abundance (to be defined) by 2030, restoration…

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Rhos Gelli Gron common, by Peter Foulkes

Ceredigion common saved from ugly fencing

May 11, 2021

We are delighted that a planning inspector has rejected an application from the Caron Estate for a 1,589-metre fence across Rhos Gelli Gron common, near Tregaron in Ceredigion. The estate applied for the fencing under section 38 of the Commons Act 2006.  The application is determined by the Planning Inspectorate on behalf of the environment…

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Grant a green: The Open Spaces Society’s call to local councils

April 29, 2021

Today we launch our Grant A Green campaign.  The society is to urge local councils in England and Wales voluntarily to register their open spaces as town or village greens[1], to protect them from development and give local people rights of recreation there. It is more important now than ever to secure our green spaces. …

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