National park bosses pleased at government u-turn over planning laws in New Forest

Daily Echo: Delight at planning u-turn in New Forest Delight at planning u-turn in New Forest

NATIONAL park bosses have told of their delight after the Government bowed to pressure and left the New Forest out of new planning laws.

Campaigners had feared the relaxing of planning rules would have led to “ghost villages” where people only lived at the weekends and allowed barns to be turned into homes without the need for permission.

Two weeks ago, planning minister Nick Boles faced a storm of protest over the proposed shake-up when the matter was raised during a House of Commons debate.

The New Forest National Park Authority (NPA) had helped lead the protests, telling the Government last year that it was “very worried” about the plans.

It warned they would damage attempts to limit new housing to the four defined New Forest villages of Ashurst, Brockenhurst, Lyndhurst and Sway.

And they threatened the historic ‘commoning system’, which grants some people the right to release animals onto the open forest, creating its “mosaic of grazed habitats”.

Now Mr Boles has decided that changes to barn conversions will go ahead – but not in national parks, conservation areas or areas of outstanding natural beauty.

NPA chairman Julian Johnson said: “A number of Forest organisations, including ourselves, made representations to Government about the proposals.

“We are pleased that today our on-going commitment to securing a living, working Forest for the benefit of the economy and local communities has been recognised.”

However, Mr Boles added that national parks would still be expected to accept their share of development, taking into account “the social and economic wellbeing of the area.”

He said: “National parks, and other protected areas, are living communities whose young people and families need access to housing if their communities are to grow and prosper.”

Dr Julian Lewis, Tory MP for New Forest East, welcomed the Government’s U-turn.

But he added: “There are other important New Forest towns and villages outside the boundaries of the Park, and these require protection from over-development too. We must not let down our guard.”

The new rules mean that up to |450 sq m (4,850 sq ft) of buildings per farm can be turned into a maximum of three houses.

It will also mean that up to 500 sq m of agricultural buildings on each farm can be changed into schools and nurseries.

However, farmers will not be allowed to “demolish cow sheds or outbuildings”, only to convert or renovate them, officials said.

Comments (4)

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8:37am Sun 9 Mar 14

Dai Rear says...

Must admit I'd rather see a home than a derelict barn with bits of corrugated iron hanging off it
Must admit I'd rather see a home than a derelict barn with bits of corrugated iron hanging off it Dai Rear
  • Score: -3

1:09pm Sun 9 Mar 14

charrlee says...

Let's hope Dai Rear (why did he/she choose that for a name? Is it a joke or a Freudian slip?) enjoys his holiday this year touring new housing estates of outstanding natural beauty!!!

Our art galleries are utterly full of paintings of Naturalistic and Realistic interpretations of the British landscape : Turner, Constable, Millais, etc. I suspect many of the works that Letts and Murray want to flog off in their council yard sale depict similar subject matter. It is tangible proof that most of us love our countryside, adore our forests. and enjoy paintings, photographs and films of it.

Set against that is the awareness that as our population grows, we need housing. We are fast running out of places to tack on yet another estate as our towns and cities sprawl ever outwards. We lack the money and resources to build tiered housing estates "in the sky", so it's a question of nicking patches of land here and there and sticking a hundred houses behind lines of trees. It doesn't fool anyone, as those who know the glorious "drive in the country" from Totton to Calshot. Lines of trees screen the distant view until you get to Holbury, when the natural curtains part and there before you stands the giant metropolis that is the Fawley Refinery. Its grand appearance precisely defines the notion of anti-climax.

This problem is never going to go away unless we can reduce the population, or find a suitable, affordable method of housing people. We know the natural world has a crucial impact on the material world, so, love forests or hate 'em, we need to preserve them if we want to life as we know it to continue.
Let's hope Dai Rear (why did he/she choose that for a name? Is it a joke or a Freudian slip?) enjoys his holiday this year touring new housing estates of outstanding natural beauty!!! Our art galleries are utterly full of paintings of Naturalistic and Realistic interpretations of the British landscape : Turner, Constable, Millais, etc. I suspect many of the works that Letts and Murray want to flog off in their council yard sale depict similar subject matter. It is tangible proof that most of us love our countryside, adore our forests. and enjoy paintings, photographs and films of it. Set against that is the awareness that as our population grows, we need housing. We are fast running out of places to tack on yet another estate as our towns and cities sprawl ever outwards. We lack the money and resources to build tiered housing estates "in the sky", so it's a question of nicking patches of land here and there and sticking a hundred houses behind lines of trees. It doesn't fool anyone, as those who know the glorious "drive in the country" from Totton to Calshot. Lines of trees screen the distant view until you get to Holbury, when the natural curtains part and there before you stands the giant metropolis that is the Fawley Refinery. Its grand appearance precisely defines the notion of anti-climax. This problem is never going to go away unless we can reduce the population, or find a suitable, affordable method of housing people. We know the natural world has a crucial impact on the material world, so, love forests or hate 'em, we need to preserve them if we want to life as we know it to continue. charrlee
  • Score: 2

1:51pm Sun 9 Mar 14

Torchie1 says...

charrlee wrote:
Let's hope Dai Rear (why did he/she choose that for a name? Is it a joke or a Freudian slip?) enjoys his holiday this year touring new housing estates of outstanding natural beauty!!!

Our art galleries are utterly full of paintings of Naturalistic and Realistic interpretations of the British landscape : Turner, Constable, Millais, etc. I suspect many of the works that Letts and Murray want to flog off in their council yard sale depict similar subject matter. It is tangible proof that most of us love our countryside, adore our forests. and enjoy paintings, photographs and films of it.

Set against that is the awareness that as our population grows, we need housing. We are fast running out of places to tack on yet another estate as our towns and cities sprawl ever outwards. We lack the money and resources to build tiered housing estates "in the sky", so it's a question of nicking patches of land here and there and sticking a hundred houses behind lines of trees. It doesn't fool anyone, as those who know the glorious "drive in the country" from Totton to Calshot. Lines of trees screen the distant view until you get to Holbury, when the natural curtains part and there before you stands the giant metropolis that is the Fawley Refinery. Its grand appearance precisely defines the notion of anti-climax.

This problem is never going to go away unless we can reduce the population, or find a suitable, affordable method of housing people. We know the natural world has a crucial impact on the material world, so, love forests or hate 'em, we need to preserve them if we want to life as we know it to continue.
Just to pick on one aspect of your observations, ESSO company that built the refinery took the view back in the 1940s that the impact of their new site should be minimised if at all possible and though it's impossible to hide a structure reaching 100 metres in to the air the view in Holbury isn't that bad. Use Google Earth to see what efforts have been made to minimise the impact of the other sites around the UK.
[quote][p][bold]charrlee[/bold] wrote: Let's hope Dai Rear (why did he/she choose that for a name? Is it a joke or a Freudian slip?) enjoys his holiday this year touring new housing estates of outstanding natural beauty!!! Our art galleries are utterly full of paintings of Naturalistic and Realistic interpretations of the British landscape : Turner, Constable, Millais, etc. I suspect many of the works that Letts and Murray want to flog off in their council yard sale depict similar subject matter. It is tangible proof that most of us love our countryside, adore our forests. and enjoy paintings, photographs and films of it. Set against that is the awareness that as our population grows, we need housing. We are fast running out of places to tack on yet another estate as our towns and cities sprawl ever outwards. We lack the money and resources to build tiered housing estates "in the sky", so it's a question of nicking patches of land here and there and sticking a hundred houses behind lines of trees. It doesn't fool anyone, as those who know the glorious "drive in the country" from Totton to Calshot. Lines of trees screen the distant view until you get to Holbury, when the natural curtains part and there before you stands the giant metropolis that is the Fawley Refinery. Its grand appearance precisely defines the notion of anti-climax. This problem is never going to go away unless we can reduce the population, or find a suitable, affordable method of housing people. We know the natural world has a crucial impact on the material world, so, love forests or hate 'em, we need to preserve them if we want to life as we know it to continue.[/p][/quote]Just to pick on one aspect of your observations, ESSO company that built the refinery took the view back in the 1940s that the impact of their new site should be minimised if at all possible and though it's impossible to hide a structure reaching 100 metres in to the air the view in Holbury isn't that bad. Use Google Earth to see what efforts have been made to minimise the impact of the other sites around the UK. Torchie1
  • Score: -1

2:39pm Sun 9 Mar 14

charrlee says...

Torchie1 wrote:
charrlee wrote:
Let's hope Dai Rear (why did he/she choose that for a name? Is it a joke or a Freudian slip?) enjoys his holiday this year touring new housing estates of outstanding natural beauty!!!

Our art galleries are utterly full of paintings of Naturalistic and Realistic interpretations of the British landscape : Turner, Constable, Millais, etc. I suspect many of the works that Letts and Murray want to flog off in their council yard sale depict similar subject matter. It is tangible proof that most of us love our countryside, adore our forests. and enjoy paintings, photographs and films of it.

Set against that is the awareness that as our population grows, we need housing. We are fast running out of places to tack on yet another estate as our towns and cities sprawl ever outwards. We lack the money and resources to build tiered housing estates "in the sky", so it's a question of nicking patches of land here and there and sticking a hundred houses behind lines of trees. It doesn't fool anyone, as those who know the glorious "drive in the country" from Totton to Calshot. Lines of trees screen the distant view until you get to Holbury, when the natural curtains part and there before you stands the giant metropolis that is the Fawley Refinery. Its grand appearance precisely defines the notion of anti-climax.

This problem is never going to go away unless we can reduce the population, or find a suitable, affordable method of housing people. We know the natural world has a crucial impact on the material world, so, love forests or hate 'em, we need to preserve them if we want to life as we know it to continue.
Just to pick on one aspect of your observations, ESSO company that built the refinery took the view back in the 1940s that the impact of their new site should be minimised if at all possible and though it's impossible to hide a structure reaching 100 metres in to the air the view in Holbury isn't that bad. Use Google Earth to see what efforts have been made to minimise the impact of the other sites around the UK.
I take your point, Torchie. But I feel that your highlighting the point in isolation tends to give it an emphasis I did not intend.
Before I retired, I drove to Holbury everyday to work for 20 years, and as you reach the Hardley roundbout, there is Fawley in all its gargantuan splendour. Being a teacher, I obviously knew hundreds of people who lived in the area, and very few of them had anything complimentary to say about the refinery. The smell was the most frequently-mentioned aspect, the expression "Fawley's f*rted" being very common amongst the kids. It was commonly remarked that wherever you went down there, it was never more than a few minutes before you saw some part of the building again. As you rightly say, it is impossible to hide such a tall structure.

How many more decades, centuries, will we be able to go on "minimising the impact" of essential building on our landscape?
[quote][p][bold]Torchie1[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]charrlee[/bold] wrote: Let's hope Dai Rear (why did he/she choose that for a name? Is it a joke or a Freudian slip?) enjoys his holiday this year touring new housing estates of outstanding natural beauty!!! Our art galleries are utterly full of paintings of Naturalistic and Realistic interpretations of the British landscape : Turner, Constable, Millais, etc. I suspect many of the works that Letts and Murray want to flog off in their council yard sale depict similar subject matter. It is tangible proof that most of us love our countryside, adore our forests. and enjoy paintings, photographs and films of it. Set against that is the awareness that as our population grows, we need housing. We are fast running out of places to tack on yet another estate as our towns and cities sprawl ever outwards. We lack the money and resources to build tiered housing estates "in the sky", so it's a question of nicking patches of land here and there and sticking a hundred houses behind lines of trees. It doesn't fool anyone, as those who know the glorious "drive in the country" from Totton to Calshot. Lines of trees screen the distant view until you get to Holbury, when the natural curtains part and there before you stands the giant metropolis that is the Fawley Refinery. Its grand appearance precisely defines the notion of anti-climax. This problem is never going to go away unless we can reduce the population, or find a suitable, affordable method of housing people. We know the natural world has a crucial impact on the material world, so, love forests or hate 'em, we need to preserve them if we want to life as we know it to continue.[/p][/quote]Just to pick on one aspect of your observations, ESSO company that built the refinery took the view back in the 1940s that the impact of their new site should be minimised if at all possible and though it's impossible to hide a structure reaching 100 metres in to the air the view in Holbury isn't that bad. Use Google Earth to see what efforts have been made to minimise the impact of the other sites around the UK.[/p][/quote]I take your point, Torchie. But I feel that your highlighting the point in isolation tends to give it an emphasis I did not intend. Before I retired, I drove to Holbury everyday to work for 20 years, and as you reach the Hardley roundbout, there is Fawley in all its gargantuan splendour. Being a teacher, I obviously knew hundreds of people who lived in the area, and very few of them had anything complimentary to say about the refinery. The smell was the most frequently-mentioned aspect, the expression "Fawley's f*rted" being very common amongst the kids. It was commonly remarked that wherever you went down there, it was never more than a few minutes before you saw some part of the building again. As you rightly say, it is impossible to hide such a tall structure. How many more decades, centuries, will we be able to go on "minimising the impact" of essential building on our landscape? charrlee
  • Score: 2

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