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Forest of Dean saved from major development

Posted on 17th November 2014

Following a protest by campaign group Hands Off Our Forest (HOOF), a bill that seeked to develop parts of the Forest of Dean has been turned down in the House of Lords.

Around 400 HOOF campaigners congregated at Mallard’s Pike in the Forest of Dean on Bonfire Night to protest against the Infrastructure Bill.

The Bill, if passed, could have allowed any government to sell any part of the Forest, close footpaths and by-ways, and give planning consent for a large level of development. This could also have impacted on the region’s tourism industry as many holiday cottages and homes in the Forest of Dean could have been affected.

A recent debate about the Infrastructure Bill saw Lord Ahmed of Wimbledon agree to the proposal to exempt forestry land from being used as sites for development.

The protest group partnered with other campaign groups Our Woods and 38 Degrees to collate over 150,000 signatures in one petition.

Owen Adams, secretary for HOOF, told the Gloucester Citizen, “It does seem that collective people power works in a big way.”

Image Credit: Stuart Richards (flickr.com)