The Open Spaces Society, Britain’s oldest national conservation body, has plunged into the debate on the future of the designated landscapes of Wales.
The Open Spaces Society ’s general secretary, Kate Ashbrook, highlights the threat to Wales’s national parks and areas of outstanding natural beauty (AONBs) in her ‘Opinion’ in the society’s latest issue of Open Space magazine (pdf attached, page 1).
In 2014, the Welsh Government appointed a panel of respected academics and practitioners, Terry Marsden, John Lloyd Jones and Ruth Williams, to undertake an independent review of these landscapes to ensure that they are “best equipped to meet current and future challenges while building upon their internationally recognised status”.
‘A year later, after receiving much evidence, the panel made 69 recommendations—all within the framework and spirit of the founding National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act 1949. The recommendations give greater strength to the purposes and duties of the parks and AONBs—“factories of well-being”—and recognise their contribution to recreation and enjoyment.
‘Bizarrely, the government set up another group which, 18 months later, produced another report, undermining Marsden. It fails to mention the parks’ purposes of protecting natural beauty and promoting enjoyment and seems to open them to the threat of inappropriate development, with actions which are woolly and jargon-ridden.
‘Fortunately, after a robust debate in the Senedd on 6 June, ministers have pulled back and are now consulting again on the future of the designated areas, in Taking forward Wales’ sustainable management of natural resources. The Open Spaces Society will work with others to produce a strong response to this document.’
Also in this issue of Open Space:
- The society advises on how to rescue ‘lost’ commons in Wales following the introduction of a law on 5 May which enables this to be done (page 2).
- Commons win European Union protection (page 3).
- Cases about a village green at Mistley in Essex (page 4) and a common in Trimpley, Worcestershire (page 6).
- Fighting Ministry of Defence plans to deregister 17 square miles of common land at Warcop in Cumbria (page 7).
- Wind turbines rejected at Llandegley Rocks in Powys (page 10).
- The Open Spaces Society helps to save two paths across Harrow School grounds from being moved (page 12).
- Progress in recording a bridleway on the offiInvalid URL for PDF Viewercial map at Kineton, Warwickshire (page 14).
Click below here to view the PDF
For more infortmation visit: www.oss.org.uk