Latest News

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 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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Hare Lane, site of footway

Littleworth Road: A hare-laned proposal

December 23, 2021

We have condemned a proposal for works on Hare Lane Green [1] as hare-brained. The Luminous Property Group has applied to the Secretary of State for permission (for works on common land) to construct a raised and widened footway on Littleworth Road south of Claygate House. The footway would be bounded on the inside with…

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2021 What a year!

December 22, 2021

Watch our general secretary Kate Ashbrook’s Christmas message

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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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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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