Friday, 4 March 2016

Our Pledge To Support Crawley's Natural Environment

This week in my Crawley Observer column, I have written about the visit of Environment Secretary Liz Truss MP to Tilgate Golf Course, as well as the commitment from Crawley's Conservative Councillors that a newly elected Conservative-run Crawley Borough Council in May's elections will be a friend to our natural environment and to our rich and varied wildlife.

 My photo of Tilgate Golf Course on a warm October day in 2015

I was very pleased to receive unanimous support for my Motion at last week’s Full Council meeting at Crawley Borough Council, which reflected the public concerns about the woodland management at Tilgate Golf Course. While sadly, some things cannot be undone, I am now expecting improvements going forward and I hope that public confidence can return.

It is regrettable that the Council was having to play catch-up, but now that the Council has caught up with public concern, I am keen that everyone works constructively with the golf course operator to ensure future works are carried out sympathetically.             
Last weekend, I and Crawley’s MP Henry Smith brought Liz Truss MP, the Secretary of State for the Environment, to visit the woodland at the golf course to see for herself what has caused so much upset locally. While we were viewing an area that had been completely cleared of trees, a couple of passing cyclists called out to us saying that the area had been ruined. What was welcome was Liz telling me about the Conservative Government’s commitment to plant 11 million trees during this Parliament up to 2020. This follows on from another 11 million trees than have been planted since 2010 under the Coalition Government.

Liz Truss launched a scheme in December to provide one million trees to be planted in a community programme with schools across the country. Working together with The Woodland Trust the project will initially be open to 7,000 primary schools in England, which will receive native trees including cherry, silver birch, hawthorn and hazel. I think this is an excellent way to involve children in caring for their environment and to appreciate the beauty of trees. 
Locally, Crawley’s Conservative Councillors are committed to looking after our precious natural environment. This includes our woodland and green spaces as well as wetland environments such as lakes, ponds and streams. A new Conservative-run Crawley Council will look for ways to be friendly towards our local wildlife and seek to enhance areas in and around the town that provide a valuable habitat for Crawley’s rich and varied wildlife.             


Nick F said...

Well I don't agree that the Council has caught up with public opinion, the council has debated the issue but still nothing has been done to clear up the mess and sort out the paths. The rain this week has made many paths even more muddy and impassable. When are Glendale going to be taken to task and told to produce a programme of works?.

If the Council does not starting asking questions of Glendale, then nothing will happen.

So far many words have been spoken and written but little or no action has been forthcoming.

Nick F

John Allum said...

Three months on, what has happened? The path from Furnace Green to the club house (Tilgate Drive) is almost impassable. It has got worse since the landscape was changed at the driving range. As for the beautiful woodland it is still a depressing disgrace. If a member of public had caused this much damage to a grass verge there would be immediate Council action. Have Glendale been ordered to sort the mess out?

Duncan Crow said...

Hi John. We had a meeting with Glendale last week and did a inspection of much of the course, but didn't cover all of it due to the size. The triangle area is going to be replanted with native species. Which path from Furnace Green do you mean? I'm guessing from Rosamund Road? I will raise this with Glendale.