Latest News

‘Natural Health Service’ proposed by access campaigners on anniversary of Kinder trespass

April 26, 2022

Access campaigners have called for a new movement to campaign for a ‘Natural Heath Service’ through greater access to our countryside. The proposal was presented at the 90th anniversary celebrations of the Kinder Scout Mass Trespass at Hayfield on Saturday (April 23). Kate Ashbrook, our general secretary, told a packed audience in The Royal Hotel:…

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Our new guide to saving green spaces

April 19, 2022

We have published a new edition of Getting Greens Registered, our step-by-step guide to registering land in England and Wales as a town or village green. Once registered, the land is protected from development and encroachment, and local people have rights of recreation there. The new (fourth) edition explains how local people must gather evidence…

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New green secured voluntarily in Dartmouth, Devon

February 4, 2022

We are delighted that the historic community-orchard in Dartmouth, Devon, is now officially a village green.  On 2 February, the society joined an event organised by the Friends of Dartmouth Community Orchard and Dartmouth Town Council to unveil the plaque marking this achievement. Now that the orchard is registered as a green with Devon County…

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Queen's Crescent LGS, Exeter

Vital piece missing from ‘levelling-up’ jigsaw

February 2, 2022

We have criticised today’s announcement on levelling up as a missed chance to rectify the gross inequality of access to local spaces. The Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, Michael Gove, has unveiled his ‘levelling-up plan’ without a mention of the importance of local green spaces.  Yet these, which have always been…

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Our stand against the grandstand

January 27, 2022

We save common land at Richmond Low Moor, North Yorkshire We have welcomed a court order setting aside the removal of common land from Richmond Low Moor following the society’s legal action. On 21 June 2021, North Yorkshire County Council granted an application by the Richmond Burgage Pastures Committee to deregister common land at the…

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Our justice system undermined

January 26, 2022

Over the last 157 years, the Open Spaces Society has taken pride in successfully using the courts to rectify wrongs affecting commons, greens, other open spaces, and public paths. We also back our members in their legal actions. Now, the Westminster government’s Judicial Review and Courts Bill is set to have a profoundly detrimental effect…

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A step up for England’s protected landscapes

January 20, 2022

The government has, at last, announced its response to the Landscapes Review in England.  The review, led by journalist Julian Glover, was published in September 2019, more than two years ago, and made ambitious recommendations for the future of our national parks and areas of outstanding natural beauty. In his foreword to the response Defra…

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Parks for ever

January 11, 2022

Simon Hunt, one of our trustees and the former chair of the Friends of Finsbury Park, reflects on the increasing importance of open spaces in the context of the pandemic and climate crisis. On 23 March 2020 the public was told to stay at home. Shops, pubs, gyms, theatres, cafes and restaurants were closed, and…

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Give us back our green

December 3, 2021

We have called for the return to public use of Market Green[1] in Water Orton, Warwickshire which, we say, unlawfully has been closed off to recreational use. The owner of the land, Star Pubs and Bars Ltd,[2] has applied to the Secretary of State to remove the status of the land as town or village…

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Darvel Down green, Battle, East Sussex

We back bid for new greens in Battle, East Sussex

November 25, 2021

We are backing our member, Mr Bev Marks, who is spearheading a campaign to protect Battle’s green spaces for ever, by registering them as town or village greens. Bev has proposed to Battle Town Council that it persuade the owners of four green spaces voluntarily to register them as greens. The spaces have been earmarked…

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