Local Group Name - Campaign to Protect Rural England

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Tuesday, 17 February 2009 13:40

Rail Transport

CPRE have been lobbying regional and national government departments for many years for improvements to services and infrastructure. Most recently we sent outlines of our local ambitions to the National Office in London for their submissions to the Government in February 2009. These will propose priorities for Regional Funding Allocations (RFAs).

It was good to see those who came to the meeting on the 13th May in Bath. We had a good turnout and two excellent presentations from Paul Miner from CPRE Head Office and Jim Claydon from the Royal Town Planning Institute. The question and comment session was chaired by Hugh Delap who is the Chairman of Freshford Parish Council.

Paul took us through many of the key points currently being considered - including the way that tranquillity has been eroded in our area; thoughts around the future of food, farming and forestry; the built environment; planning and local democracy; lifestyle, values and attitudes; climate change and the countryside.

Jim then noted that there were many point of agreement between the RTPI stance and that of CPRE, but, not surprisingly, the difference came with Green Belt. RTPI were in favour of green wedges into our cities and the erosion of some of the existing green belt. The point was made by several of the audience, that if this was allowed then the risk of further diminution of the green belt was very high. Once the barrier had been lifted then there was a very big risk that the discipline for protecting our countryside would be lost. Green Belt had been successful and should remain as a planning discipline.

There was further discussion on the role of farming in managing our countryside and there was appeared to be consensus around farming's importance, for food security and also to ensure that our countryside is attractive as a place for recreation for all.

Everyone is encouraged to contribute further to the debate at www.cpre.org.uk/debates. We will be forwarding the comments and questions raised at the session to Head Office and the County Branches Forum.

Monday, 19 March 2007 13:41

Sustrans Routes

There are some exciting proposals from Sustrans, which would really make a difference to those of us who find the hills around Bath too much of a challenge for cycling!

dave gill with the queen 20062006 saw CPRE celebrate its 80th birthday.

One of the celebratory events was a reception in November at St James' Palace hosted by the Queen who is CPRE's patron.

The North Somerset District committee was well represented at the event by Dave and Gill Gray our joint secretaries and air transport expert Noel Brailsford. The photo shows Dave and Gill Gray caught on camera as presentations were being made to Her Majesty (photo courtesy of Paul Burns Photography/CPRE). Featured on the right hand side is Sir Nigel Thompson, CPRE's Chairman, in conversation with Her Majesty.

The English Cocktail Menu, selected to emphasise CPRE's campaign for local foods, included mini Cumberland sausages and Somerset cheese. A presentation was made to Her Majesty of three items symbolising aspects of CPRE's work: a photograph of the CPRE rambler rose "Rural England" produced to celebrate the 80th birthday; a copy of CPRE's new book "A Portrait of England" and a bouquet of English autumn fruits and foliage.

It was a good opportunity to compare notes with members from other branches, and hear, for example, that the Yorkshire Branch, which includes the Pennines, is 100 miles across which makes organisation of meetings quite difficult! It helped to meet staff from the National Office and put faces to several of the voices with whom we frequently speak on the phone.

Following the Queen's departure from the reception those attending were able to circulate through the State Apartments at St James' and admire the many beautiful furnishings and interesting pictures. It was a privilege to have been invited to such a prestigious occasion.

NSC sent BIA a strong message at a full council meeting on February 20th about significant concerns it has regarding their recently released Master Plan for expansion:

"...the absence of a viable and sustainable surface access strategy..."
"... the need for an independent environmental and biodiversity impact assessment..."
" ...answer anticipated growth in noise and other pollution issues"
"...the need for an independent assessment into the economic cost/benefit impact on local and regional businesses..."
"...call for full consideration of the Stern Report relating to climate change effects of an expanded airport..."
"...We particularly note the apparent contradictions of expanding Bristol International Airport whilst calling for reductions in emissions from Bristol industry in order to attain Government targets..."

Read more on the Stop Bristol Airport Expansion website »

Thursday, 01 March 2007 13:43

Website launched!

Welcome to the brand-new CPRE Avonside website!

Many thanks to everyone involved in creating it and filling it with interesting information.

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