Latest survey tells me that 9 out of 10 of worst performing UK cancer hospitals are in London; thanks a bunch! My plan to downsize and move to the country, where family assure me waiting times etc. are minimal, looks like a good idea. Until ……

I get a frantic email to say “We need your help. The council is trying to build 15,000 houses in our area MOSTLY on green belt land. If this happens, yet another bit of our dwindling countryside will be buried in concrete,”. Apparently there are no plans for extra roads, schools, hospitals etc. to service the expected 60,000 extra people. So bang goes my cunning plan. No extra hospital beds = longer waiting times.

So I willingly sign https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/protect-the-green-belt-at-culham-from-loss-shrinkage-or-relocation-through-future-development.

Plans include a “£100 million bridge” to replace one that has stood for centuries; Iron and Bronze age sites and a Roman settlement will be buried under concrete, and the tiny village of Culham will be swamped – let alone the area round about, where I planned to live. The plan will affect the flood plain in the Thames Valley – and we all know what that could mean. According to locals there are plenty of brownfield sites, but the Council won’t consider these (could it be because developers won’t cough up such a large ‘community benefit’ [a.k.a. a bribe] if they can’t build on greenfield?) One can understand developers wanting to get their hands on this land, as it features in the TV series Midsomer Murders. But it should be left for all to enjoy.

It seems that nowhere in Britain is safe – but if you believe, like me, that developers should use up brownfield sites, leaving the countryside to be enjoyed by everyone – and me – please could you sign this petition ? https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/protect-the-green-belt-at-culham-from-loss-shrinkage-or-relocation-
Historic England have now entered the arena http://www.heraldseries.co.uk/news/15474252.Thousands_of_new_homes_thrown_into_doubt_by_ancient_sites/?ref=erec#gallery1

Incidentally this issue could affect your area too, because if the inspector allows change of designation use here, it will set a precedent for the whole of Britain.

The Government doesn’t seem concerned; this area used to receive man high-spending visitors who bought in much-needed overseas funds. I approach press office of Visit Britain (we taxpayers fund their marketing efforts to promote us abroad), and after two weeks get an email back asking if I am still interested! Phone to say YES – bored voice says she has been on holiday, but will get back to me ‘next week’. No wonder UK is full of backpackers using our roads, loos, etc. but bringing food into UK inside their camper vans. Lovely people, but Visit Britain needs to get more efficient and bring back the high-spending visitors who bought in a massive amount to help our economy.

Cover our greenbelt in concrete, and only visitors who come are those intent on partying and having a good time without spending anything. So not only will I lose my potential views, but also those visitors who spent ‘quality time’ and money in hotels, restaurants, up-market shops etc. helping our economy will go elsewhere.

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