Saturday, 14 May 2011

Oaken Wood letter to Eric Pickles

Oaken Wood has been referred to Eric Pickles. The campaign group are keen for people to write to him to help sway his decision. Below is my letter, feel free to plagiarise!
Write to Eric Pickles: or Eric Pickles, House of Commons, London SW1A 0AA. Also write to local MP Helen Grant:

Dear Mr Pickles,

Last week Kent County Council decided to allow the destruction of 78 acres of ancient woodland so that more aggregate can be quarried to build more roads. This decision has been referred to you as it falls outside of KCC's mineral extraction strategy and I am asking you to turn it down. Here is why:

Ancient woodland is a valuable source of biodiversity. Oaken Wood is ancient woodland and has been shown to be wooded since the 1600's. Kent Wildlife Trust have found a wide range of species on the site including one that is unique to the wood. Planning Policy Statement 9: Biodiversity and Geological Conservation explains why ancient woodland is so valuable and therefore why Oaken Wood should be protected.

Minerals Planning Policy Statement 1 states 'do not permit mineral proposals that would result in the loss or deterioration of ancient woodland, not otherwise statutorily protected'.

If this quarry is allowed to go ahead, you will be making a dangerous precedent for the future undermining ancient woodland across the country. Please do not allow our woodland to become this unprotected.

Stuart Jeffery,


botanygirl said...

I completely agree with you.

Alarmingly/conveniently KCC are now trying to add Oaken wood to the new Minerals plan which they are currently consulting on.

So even if Eric Pickles says no on this occasion as Oaken wood currently not included in mineral plan, future applications would be very likely to be approved.

Stuart Jeffery said...

The timing is appalling but I suppose as KCC has passed the application they would want to join the dots to have it in the minerals plan.

Of course the minerals plan says Kent doesn't need that much ragstone so they will need to delete that bit from the plan to make it consistent. Which won't be a problem for them as they wouldn't want facts to get in the way of decisions.