I mentioned a few weeks ago that Government Minister Greg Clark was criticising the National Trust (and used very emotive language in doing so).
Mr Clark has been a bit more conciliatory of late but this doesn't seem to have convinced the Trust whose director Dame Fiona Reynolds said:
We're not prepared to enter into such talks until we have a clear statement, from the highest levels of government, clarifying that the planning system is not there principally to promote economic development.
Planning is essential for protecting vital public interests, including the quality of the landscape, respect for environmental limits, and making good places.
Now I think she has a point. Yes we need a strong economy and we need housing but to do so at the expense of our environment is a bit like throwing the baby out with the bathwater if you ask me.
The latest update on the trust website says.
Despite news that the Government has offered to talk through the proposed changes to the planning system, we’re not convinced they’re listening. Until Government can guarantee they’ll consider a new approach, we will continue to campaign hard and urge you to get involved.
We believe in growth – but not at all costs. Planning for people combines long-term growth with other important things like local character and space to breathe, tranquillity and beauty. We need a system that serves all our interests, from commerce to communities.
To which I find myself agreeing.
I am sceptical of the Government because in the past we've been told that it was essential for our economic welfare to privatise utilities, we all took our shares and now we find that for instance Scottish Power is owned by the Spanish etc. What do we own anymore? All our utilities seem to be over sees owned. Would the French, German and Spanish do that? Strikes me as bonkers!!
We privatised our building societies and made them banks. Oh yes lets listen to the City of London and the banks they would never lend out 125% Mortgages and lend money to people with no hope of paying it back would they....
Maybe listening to more conservative voices with a small c is the way forward.
If you feel that way you can sign the trusts petition. A 100,000 signatures and then it gets debated in parliament. You would have thought it should be debated anyway/