Latest News

Little comfort from updated planning policies

July 22, 2021

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) has published an updated version of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF). There are six main changes but we are disappointed that the revisions do not reflect the submission we made on the consultation. Says our case officer Nicola Hodgson: ‘We remain concerned that the government’s…

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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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Patricia approaches her apogee, Lyme Cage. Image John Rogers

Patricia’s heroic hike

June 10, 2021

Schoolgirl Patricia Wittbom chose to raise money for the society by a challenge walk. She tells her story. My name is Patricia Wittbom, I’m 11 years old and I am in year 7 at Tytherington School, Macclesfield, Cheshire. During the last year of covid lockdown I was lucky to be able to go out each…

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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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Detail of the plaque for the bench

Walkers’ champion honoured with bench

May 11, 2021

Some of David Bounds’ family and friends met on 30 April to unveil a bench in his honour on the hilltop footpath between Aston and Remenham.  David, who died in October 2019, aged 87, was the author of the Rambling for Pleasure series of walking guides. David, who lived in Twyford, spent much of his…

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New activist in Kirklees

April 29, 2021

We have appointed Stephen Hill as our local correspondent for Kirklees in West Yorkshire. Stephen will keep a close watch on paths, commons, greens and open spaces. Stephen lives in East Bierley, four miles south-east of Bradford.  He has recently retired from a long career in civil engineering, working on many large infrastructure projects in…

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Green spaces, open places

April 14, 2021

The Open Spaces Society’s call to candidates in the Senedd election, 6 May 2021. The pandemic has shown the importance of public paths and open spaces for recreation and relaxation, now is the time to invest in them for the health and well-being of the people of Wales. The Open Spaces Society[1] calls on candidates…

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Tony on Trawden recreation ground with Pendle Hill behind, Christmas day family meet-up outdoors, 2020

Tony Greaves (27 July 1942-23 March 2021)

April 6, 2021

We are deeply saddened that our vice-president, Tony (Lord) Greaves, has died suddenly at his home at Trawden in Lancashire. He was 78. Tony was a Liberal Democrat peer and Pendle Borough Councillor, who spoke out strongly on behalf of the environment and people’s rights. He entered the House of Lords as a life peer…

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Countryside Code’s seventieth anniversary

April 1, 2021

The Open Spaces Society’s involvement with the Countryside Code precedes its first publication, as the Country Code, in 1951. In fact, with the Ramblers, we instigated it. The society has always wanted to see greater access to the countryside and everyone to feel welcome there. In 1945 we noted that one of the difficulties we…

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We criticise sinister Police Bill

March 15, 2021

Along with 250 other organisations, we have signed an open letter to the Home Secretary and Justice Secretary calling on government to rethink the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill which has its second reading on 15 and 16 March, having been introduced to parliament only days before. The bill creates numerous new criminal offences,…

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