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Protect open spaces

Comment 12th July 2010

Repeal the provisions of the Local Government, Planning and Land Act 1980 which removed the requirement for local authorities, when using open space for another purpose, to provide land in exchange. (Now they only have to advertise their intention and consider public objections, which they can easily disregard.) Reinstate the requirement to provide land in exchange which is at least as large and as advantageous to the public or to submit the proposals to parliament for approval.

Why does this matter?

Public open spaces have never been more important for public recreation and relaxation, and never more under threat as local authorities sell them off for development or other purposes.  These spaces need greater protection, or at least the requirement for the authorities to provide land in exchange which is just as good if not better for public enjoyment.  If the authority cannot provide such land, the proposal should be submitted to parliament to approve.  This was the law before 1980 and it should be the law now.

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