The latest Tewkesbury Borough Plan Pre-submission Consultation is available for public consultation.
There is a proposal to designate land for house building (WIN1) within the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty adjacent to Winchcombe. Under the Countryside and Rights of Way Act (CROW Act) Section 85 places an explicit duty on the Local Authority to have regard to the purpose of conserving and enhancing the natural beauty of the AONB. This proposal could have a harmful impact on the AONB and could potentially lead to additional developments within the surrounding AONB. If you would like to find out more and comment we suggest you visit the borough plan at: www.tewkesbury.gov.uk/boroughplan
Since the Riverside Path was completed the path requires regular maintenance. We organise a monthly session on Mondays where residents and local Cotswold Voluntary Wardens come together and maintain the edges of the path. Without the volunteers the path would soon grass over and defeat the object of being accessible for all.
Today we concentrated on the Castle Street end of the path and cut back the encroaching weeds. A passing jogger even stopped and spent an hour helping together with a visitor from Paris who saw our sign. The path is enjoyed by residents, dog walkers and visitors so the efforts of the volunteers who attend each month is fully appreciated. If you would like to get involved please contact us click here or turn up with a spade and gloves. Our next sessions are Monday 11th November and Monday 9th December weather permitting from 9.45 to midday.
Many places don’t have addresses especially when you are on a trail and working out grid co-ordinates can be error prone. A new concept in working out precise locations and simpler than grid co-ordinates has been launched called what3words.
By assigning each 3m square in the world a unique 3 word address that will never change – walkers, travellers and other users can easily navigate straight to a precise location or record their position with just three words.
Also, street and place names can be difficult to pronounce in unfamiliar languages and what3words is available in 35+ languages, a 3 word address can be switched into another language instantly.
How do I use what3words in an emergency?
The latest proposals for the road improvements at Birdlip will have a great impact on the Cotswold landscape, habitat and footpaths. You can find out more about the proposals for the scheme by reading the A417 Missing Link Consultation Booklet, and provide your feedback, you can do so by completing the online feedback questionnaire.
Highways England are hosting a number of drop-in events where people can explore the proposals, talk to members of the project team, and gain an understanding of how the proposed road would fit within the landscape.
A list of the drop-in events is below:
The final report from Julian Glover to the Government has been published. For the full report click here
Their central proposal is to bring National Parks and AONBs together as part of one family of national landscapes, served by a shared National Landscapes Service (NLS) which will give them a bigger voice, bigger ambition and a new way of working to meet new challenges.
With regards to the Cotswolds the report states:
We received submissions on the case for several other AONBs to become National Parks too.
The two that stand out as leading candidates are the Cotswolds AONB and the combined Dorset and East Devon AONBs.
The Cotswolds suffers the same challenges of the Conservation Board model as the Chilterns, including a lack of a single strategic local plan with statutory status.
The area is world‐famous for its natural beauty, hugely popular with visitors from around the world and its landscape and villages are one of the emblems of England. It is a big contributor to the national economy. These things would be better supported by National Park status.
We do however want to see AONBs given greater status in the planning system. They should become statutory consultees, and we set out later how we think this can work. They should also, where appropriate, be supported to work towards local plans for their areas, prepared in conjunction with local authorities. For larger AONBs, especially those we highlight as candidates for possible National Park status, this plan should have statutory status, in place of the multitude of local authority plans.
If you are walking the Cotswold Way through Belas Knap near Winchcombe take time to study the new sign erected by the stone stile heading towards Cleeve Common. Authorities feel walkers need to be aware of the dangers of stepping over a two foot stone stile.
Winchcombe is described as the walker’s capital of the Cotswolds in the 2019 Britain’s Outdoor Capitals guide. ‘The perfect English walking town surrounded by stunning countryside’. Winchcombe is a ‘Walkers are Welcome’ town, part of a network of over 100 towns in Britain. We actively promote walking in the area and are constantly looking to improve the walking experience. Many of the town’s businesses support ‘Winchcombe Walkers are Welcome’ efforts in promoting the area and reading endorsements from national media proves that together we are succeeding.
If you are visiting Winchcombe and want to explore, try our downloadable self-guided walks ranging from 2 miles to 13.5 miles. If you prefer a guided walk, visit cotswoldsaonb.org.uk for walks led by the Cotswold Voluntary Wardens.
If you are walking between Winchcombe and Hailes you will encounter some unofficial signs put up at the end of Puck Pit Lane. For those unacquainted with the route the sign may deter you from proceeding. Please ignore the signs and continue following the Cotswold Way way markers. Public Rights of Way are investigating.
Welcomed improvements have been carried out on the Windrush Way adjacent to No Man’s Patch by Gloucestershire County Council to improve the drainage. An old stile and narrow footbridge has been replaced with a stoned surface and a gate. This will be of real benefit to walkers when the rains come.
When you stroll along the well maintained paths in the Cotswolds you may wonder who has fixed the stile, replaced a stile with a gate or repaired the adjacent drystone wall. The volunteers who carry out path maintenance and improvement, educational visits and guided walks has been recognised by being awarded the Queens Award for Voluntary Service. The volunteers help conserve the landscape, improve biodiversity and enable access to the countryside.
Lord Gardiner of Kimble, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Rural Affairs and Biosecurity writes ‘The Cotswolds are such an iconic part of our nation’s landscape, with beautiful villages, towns and countryside. Your voluntary work make such a fulsome contribution to why these places are so special and important. I know your hard work is much appreciated by residents and visitors alike’.