Government's growth drive means England's most treasured landscapes can be 'vandalised' by developers
Some of England’s most beautiful countryside, including its 10 national parks, faces the threat of “vandalism” by developers taking advantage of the Government’s drive for economic growth, the Campaign to Protect Rural England will warn today.
Its president, the former Poet Laureate Sir Andrew Motion, accuses ministers of creating an atmosphere under which all development is seen as beneficial – even when it intrudes on treasured landscapes. In a new report the CPRE says areas in greatest peril include the Mendip Hills in Somerset, the South Downs in Kent, the Shropshire Hills, the Yorkshire Dales, the Lake District and the Peak District.
Sir Andrew writes: “The English countryside is our great collective masterpiece – and any development that needlessly damages it is an act of vandalism. CPRE is observing a growing number of cases where this type of defacement is happening. Alarmingly, threats are even extending into some of our most beautiful landscapes such as our national parks and areas of outstanding natural beauty and into locally valued landscapes.”
He says: “I want to make it clear I do not think our politicians are deliberately setting out to degrade and destroy our landscapes. However, they have created an atmosphere where all development is seen as good development. When even our protected countryside is at risk, what hope is there for our unprotected but equally loved ‘ordinary’ countryside?”
The CPRE condemns the number of wind farms surrounding the Lake District national park, as well as on the North Downs in Hampshire and the Shropshire Hills, each of which is designated an area of natural beauty (AONB). It raises fears over applications for large-scale “solar farms” in AONBs in Dorset, Suffolk and East Sussex, for an open-cast coal mine in the North Pennines and for a waste incinerator on the edge of the Cotswolds.
The group attacks plans to build 521 houses in the Kent Downs AONB near Dover, 650 properties in the High Weald AONB in Kent and East Sussex, and 350 homes near Dawlish on the Devon coast. It warns that the historic Wiltshire market town of Malmesbury, famed for its 17th-century abbey, is “threatened by cumulative development applications”.
Major road-building schemes threaten to increase congestion while “devastating wide areas of countryside”. The CPRE blames the Government’s drive for growth for fuelling the large numbers of planning applications in protected areas such as national parks, and criticises the Planning Minister, Nick Boles, for suggesting they are in danger of becoming “museum pieces”.
A spokesman for the Department for Communities and Local Government said the report was misleading. “Strong planning protections remain in place for National Parks and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, which are some of this country’s most important national treasures,” he said.
filmFilm producers sue Warner Bros for $75m over Hobbit films
Swedish stars ask fans for £195 pledges on crowd-funding website
voicesJust when you thought you could find a man, get married, and have a baby by the age of 35... it turns out you’re too late, says Grace Dent
sportNapoli 2 Arsenal 0: Gunners must now face either Real Madrid, PSG, Bayern Munich, Atletico Madrid or Barcelona in knock-out stages
musicAs Mariah Carey and Noddy Holder rake in the royalties from their classics, why there hasn't been a decent festive hit for 20 years?
theatreAuthor Daniel Rosenthal recalls the mishaps that almost brought the curtain down on the likes of John Gielgud and Diana Rigg
lifeAs the Royal Mail plans to phase out deliveries on two wheels, it's no wonder posties are in a spin
musicThe 21-year-old beat Ella Eyre and Chlöe Howl to win the honour
lifeFull of the joys and want to help your fellow man? December isn't the time to do it
techLuke Blackall reports on precision engineered prams and babygros that monitor your child 24-7
Nelson Mandela memorial: ‘Bogus’ interpreter made mockery of Barack Obama’s tribute
David Cameron explains selfie with Obama and Helle Thorning-Schmidt at Mandela Memorial
French café starts charging extra to rude customers
Krokodil in Mexico? Teenager hospitalised after 'injecting drug into her genitals'
Australia incest case: Filthy and severely deformed children found in remote farming community after generations of inbreeding
- 1 Nelson Mandela memorial: ‘Bogus’ interpreter made mockery of Barack Obama’s tribute
- 2 It’s shameful that our universities have accepted gender segregation under pressure from the most oppressive religious fanatics
- 3 John McAfee's $100 'anti-NSA' device: 'this is coming and cannot be stopped'
- 4 Is Facebook making us forget? Study shows that taking pictures ruin memories
- 5 Australia incest case: Filthy and severely deformed children found in remote farming community after generations of inbreeding
- < Previous
- Next >
£77099.84 - £96375.26 per annum + Bonus + Benefits : Harrington Starr: My clie...
£45000 - £60000 per annum + Bonus and Package: Harrington Starr: Trading appli...
£35000 - £38000 per annum + Benefits: Harrington Starr: C# .NET Developer (Win...
£60000 - £70000 per annum + Benefits: Harrington Starr: Senior QA Engineer Tes...