Latest News

The Environment Act—a mixed bag

November 23, 2021

Our case officer, Nicola Hodgson, analyses the new Environment Act and finds it wanting. While we welcome the new Environment Act, we consider it to be a missed opportunity for public health and well-being. We tried to win legally-binding targets for public access but the government rejected our proposed amendments. The act gives many more…

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Downs for People celebrate their victory

People power

November 18, 2021

So often success depends on the power of people coming together, writes our general secretary, Kate Ashbrook. Whether they are saving Bristol’s downs from car-parking, protecting London’s commons from commercial exploitation, or winning access to Worthing’s hinterland, the campaigning clout of local people is fundamental. And it always has been—witness the mass trespasses on Bolton’s…

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Flooded bridleway in the Piddle Valley, Dorset

Piddle Valley bridleway

November 18, 2021

In the Piddle Valley, north of Dorchester in Dorset, a 2.5-mile bridleway has been a historic link between the three villages of Piddletrenthide, White Lackington, and Piddlehinton. Today it is in a parlous state. The Piddle Path Action Team writes of its efforts to restore it. The bridleway today is in places impassable for much…

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NEW Giving Green gift book bundles

November 2, 2021

We have partnered with Saraband, the Salford based award-winning independent publisher, as part of a Christmas fundraising initiative. The company represents authors who write about UK landscapes, wildlife, culture and folk traditions. Their titles cover fiction and non-fiction and have included a Booker Prize shortlist  entry, the Wainright Prize for nature writing and the Robert…

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View along the newly recorded route, North Walsham, Norfolk

Ancient highway recorded in Norfolk

October 28, 2021

We are delighted that a public path has been added to the official (definitive) map of Norfolk’s public rights of way, thanks to the work of our local correspondent, Ian Witham. The mile-long route runs between the B1145 road (between North Walsham and Mundesley) to the sea just south of Mundesley.  It has been recorded…

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Oyster Wharf, Tivoli Square, in 2017. Photo: Janet Probert

Oyster Wharf stays public

October 26, 2021

We have welcomed news that Oyster Wharf, part of the seafront at Mumbles, will remain a public place. In 2017, application was made by Nextcolour Ltd to Swansea Council for planning permission for development at Oyster Wharf, in which the wharf was described as: ‘Area to be closed off to vehicles…and used as public realm/piazza’. …

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Attendees at the event on 15 July

The Society celebrates the strength of people power

October 25, 2021

‘So often success depends on the power of people coming together.’  So writes Kate Ashbrook, the general secretary of the Open Spaces Society, in Opinion (page 1) of the society’s magazine Open Space, published today (25 October). Kate cites recent examples in which the society has been involved: saving Bristol’s downs from car-parking by the Downs…

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We appoint Devon paths-expert to new role

July 27, 2021

The society has appointed Devon paths-expert Helen Clayton to the new post of case officer (rights of way). The society created this post to address the increasing number of issues concerning public paths in England and Wales. Helen will champion public paths for the society, and respond to the many issues raised by its members,…

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We support Climate Cymru – voices for Wales

July 27, 2021

Climate Cymru is a campaign working for meaningful, evidence-based and fair action to protect the Wales we love from the climate and nature emergency. The campaign wants to make sure the voices of ordinary people from all over the country are heard by the people in power. Climate Cymru is aiming to take 50,000 voices…

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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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