Monthly Archives: March 2015

Bodmin Moor: completing the jigsaw

In November 1993 the Bodmin Moor Commons Bill, a private bill promoted by Cornwall County Council, entered parliament.  It was ill-conceived and driven by money: the council wanted to create a body which could be legally responsible for managing the … Continue reading

Posted in Access, common land, Dartmoor, parliament | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

On the cusp of the warblers

Yesterday felt like springtime but I reckoned it was too early for warblers. I set out across the fields from Turville, in the Buckinghamshire Chilterns, to the song of skylarks. As I walked through the woods I could hear a … Continue reading

Posted in Birds, Chilterns, common land, Turville | Tagged , , | 8 Comments

Round and round the common

The Heads of the Valleys Development Company is under financial and competitive pressure to build its massive Circuit of Wales motorsports development as soon as possible.  Bizarrely, it opted to site the construction on common land, with all the inherent delays which that … Continue reading

Posted in Access, British Horse Society, campaigns, common land, Natural Resources Wales, Open Spaces Society, riding, Wales, walking | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Acronym soup

Until this month I had not set foot in Woolmer Forest, east Hampshire, since 3 October 2002.  That was when, as a member of the Countryside Agency board, I was asked to consider whether the forest should be included within the boundary of … Continue reading

Posted in Access, National parks, Open Spaces Society, South Downs | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Reflections on the European commons conference

My article about the International Association for the Study of the Commons (IASC) European conference in Sweden has appeared in the IASC’s Commons Digest, winter 2015.  I reproduce it below. ‘Do not be afraid to go out on a limb.  That’s … Continue reading

Posted in Access, campaigns, common land, commons, International Association for the Study of the Commons, Open Spaces Society, Sweden, Woods and forests | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

A ‘little unsuspected paradise’—lost?

In 1796 the poet Thomas Gray extolled the ‘little unsuspected paradise of Grasmere’.  Two centuries later the area faces threats which Gray could not have predicted. For the Lake District National Park seems to be under unprecedented attack.   In the last … Continue reading

Posted in Access, common land, Cumbria, Lake District, National parks, Open Spaces Society, wild country | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Where am I? Nobody knows

I have been doing a rather old-fashioned thing this week.  The Open Spaces Society and Pitkin Press have just published my book, Saving Open Spaces, (about which more later in a later blog) and I wanted to post it—yes, put … Continue reading

Posted in Open Spaces Society | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments

A St David’s day wish

If I could ask the Welsh Government for a St David’s day wish, it would be this. Complete the unfinished business for the splendid Cambrian Mountains which occupy the heart of Wales.  Recognise their glory and fragility.  Designate them an Area of Outstanding … Continue reading

Posted in AONB, Natural Resources Wales, Wales | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments