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Letter: If You Value Our Green Belt Speak Up Now

Published on: 11 Jan, 2014
Updated on: 11 Jan, 2014

Hogs Back LetterFrom Bernard Parke

Hon Aldermen

Much has been written by your correspondents regarding the threat to our valuable metropolitan green belt.

It is of utmost importance to the quality of life of the people of Guildford and should be held sacrosanct.

Perhaps the residents of our town should now have the opportunity to express the feelings on the sensitive issue.

Many will speak on this subject at next Monday’s [January 13] council meeting, but will the policy makers listen?

Perhaps we should hold a local referendum to enable those who will suffer from its loss to be heard once and for all?

There is little chance that we would achieve this, manly because it will be argued that such an exercise would be too expensive, but can you actually put a price on a measure that would blight the beauty of our countryside.

It is a question of speak now or forever hold you peace.

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test 5 Responses to Letter: If You Value Our Green Belt Speak Up Now

  1. Mary Bedforth Reply

    January 12, 2014 at 5:34 pm

    BBC Website this afternoon.

    Big screens for Guildford council debates
    The Hogs Back offers 360-degree panoramas across Surrey and Hampshire (photo)

    A council is setting up big screens to allow more people to watch debates in the council chambers.

    Guildford Borough Council said it anticipated “a lot of public interest” in two petitions being discussed at a meeting at 19:00 GMT on Monday.

    The council is to discuss petitions to “Keep West Horsley in the green belt”, and to “Save the Hogs Back”.

    A room for 200 people is being set up, and the debate will be broadcast on a webcam, the council said.

    Campaigners set up a petition against the building of 821 homes on green belt land at West Horsley which was signed by 660 people.

    Almost 1,000 people signed a petition against plans for 2,000 new homes on Blackwell and Manor Farms on greenbelt land close to the Hogs Back.

  2. Peter Knight Reply

    January 13, 2014 at 12:47 pm

    I value green belt but I value my own immediate environment foremost.

    Living in Warwicks Bench I have seen no end of plot sub-division and houses being squeezed in here, there and everywhere. Abbotswood is seeing the same thing happening so much that the estate has been designated a conservation area to limit further building.

    Development of this nature destroys the area we actually live and surely this has to be more important than farmland with little to no merit.

    I therefore feel that in some circumstances some bits of green belt should be released and University of Surrey site, which is not the Hog’s Back seems perfect. Can I suggest Gosden Hill in Burpham too?

  3. Mary Bedforth Reply

    January 13, 2014 at 12:56 pm

    I watched ‘Countryfile’ on BBC1 yesterday which featured Surrey and the founder of the National Trust who lived in Hindhead. Beautiful film of the heath there and the Devil’s Punchbowl. Conan Doyle’s house also featured.

    Other segments dealt with planning issues in the countryside and the Green Belt. There was an penetrating interview with Nick Boles, the planning minister and others with officials representing councils who have been tied in knots on the creation of local plans, the lack of which appears to give developers carte blanche. Their considerable land banks were also discussed and a representative of the National Housebuilders Federation spoke about that.

    Worth a watch on the iPlayer. 5 days left.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b03q4845/Countryfile_Surrey/

    Cameron’s words in 2012 – ‘the Green Belt is safe in our hands’ – a little like those on the future of the NHS, are worth rehearing in the episode!

  4. Bernard Parke Reply

    January 13, 2014 at 4:20 pm

    I have some sympathy with your correspondent from Warwicks Bench, but I feel that the green belt is like a dam.

    Once the a dam is breached it will be virtually impossible to stop a further deluge of similar developments.

  5. Mary Bedforth Reply

    January 13, 2014 at 6:59 pm

    Yes Alderman Parke is right. It’s called ‘the thin end of the wedge’.

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