ADD UPDATE: 10 October 2020: One reason we were overjoyed when the government’s planning inspector rejected the main part of Eastleigh Borough Council’s Local Plan in April was that her decision protected the ancient woodland that is such an important part of our area’s natural heritage. No fewer than seven areas of ancient woodland might have suffered irreversible damage had Options B and C (the plan for 5,500 new houses and a major new road north of Bishopstoke and Fair Oak) gone ahead in the way that the council had intended.
Unfortunately, it turns out that this is by no means the end of the story; there is still much to do. The government recently announced its intention to remove existing protection for most of the country’s ancient woods and trees, leaving them vulnerable to damage and destruction from development. The government’s policy would also reduce the say that communities can have on decisions affecting their local trees. So our woodland in Eastleigh and Winchester, as in the rest of England, is again at risk – probably more than ever before.
Want to help protect our woodland?
If you want to find out more about this threat, please go to this page on the Woodland Trust’s website.
Even better, why not join a Woodland Trust webinar at 12pm this Thursday, 15 October to learn more and to explore what you can do to help? Given ADD’s work with the Woodland Trust, John Lauwerys, ADD’s chairman, and Caroline Dibden, Vice Chairman of CPRE Hampshire, have been invited to join the panel, so you will see at least two familiar faces! FOR A FREE TICKET, PLEASE CLICK HERE.
It is not too late to make a difference
These proposals are part of a wider, radical overhaul of our planning system, which would make it much harder for local people to have any influence over the futures of their communities. ADD believes the proposals to be potentially highly damaging and fundamentally flawed in many ways. We have submitted our views as part of the government’s consultation on the changes, which are meeting considerable opposition, not least from its own MPs.
To learn more about ADD’s position and how these proposals might affect Eastleigh and Winchester, click here.