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Informing & empowering New Forest residents and visitors


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When ONE VOICE was formed, at the end of September 2008 we found that there were many other people who shared our concerns.  We thank those who continue to support our aims, and thank everyone who has written to their Parish Council, MP, Local and District Councillors - and of course the NPA.  The following quotes from our supporters is assurance that we are not alone!


 By 11 October 2008 (less than 2 weeks after its formation), One Voice received the support of the following local & District Councillors; Members of Parliament; business owners; and others: -

"When Desmond Swayne and I spoke against the imposition of a National Park model on the New Forest, in the course of the Public Inquiry, we warned that an overarching body would upset the delicate balance of local groups and local authorities which have managed the Forest carefully and conscientiously for very many years. The NPA is now fulfilling - indeed exceeding - our worst fears about the consequences of giving power to an arrogant and insensitive bureaucracy. It is time for the people who live and work in the Forest, and who enjoy and understand it, to put a stop to this nonsense and take back control. Good luck with the campaign!"

Dr. Julian Lewis MP, New Forest East

 "I am more than happy to support the calls for both an extension to the 31st October closing date for consultation and the holding of public meetings by the National Park Authority so that they can explain their proposed policies, how they arrived at them and the evidence upon which they are based. I feel that it is particularly incumbent on a body that is not directly elected and therefore has no local mandate for it’s actions to carry out detailed and meaningful consultation. I will be attending the Forest Uprising Rally at Wilverley Plain on Saturday morning so that I can hear directly the views of so many New Forest residents".

Cllr Edward Heron, Downlands and Forest Ward

"As the an Elected Member of NFDC representing Marchwood I am able and willing to support your call for an extention untill the 30th November for consultation to be submitted. I am at present only half way through preparing my own submission".

Cllr Alan Shotter, NFDC Marchwood

" It is essential that we do everything in our power to protect the New Forest as we know and love it from the probable depredations of a non- elected Authority - Cllr. Andrew Tinsley ".

District Councillor Hordle,Everton and Tiptoe

"You can count on my support. I have lived in the area (Brockenhurst 16 years) for 42 years. I was opposed to the setting up of the National Park all along, regarding it as just another unrequired level of bureaucracy.I was particularly miffed by the devious way that Lymington was left out. I shall be at Whitemoor tomorrow morning with my terrier (on a lead of course). As stated in a letter to the A&T this morning, most if not all of the people involved in the construction of this plan will have gone in less than 10 years. The Forest will still be there".

Cllr Tony Swain, Buckland

"I attended the Boldre meeting and the Holbury one and will be at Wilverly tomorrow. Julian [Lewis] and Desmond [Swayne] are fully supportive and Julian will be at Wilverly as will a number of Totton Cllrs. I know we are not in the official national Park we are all fully behind the plans to stop the NPA riding roughshod over Forester's rights.  The next step, in my opinion, is to get rid of the NPA and go back to the Verderers and the District Council running it. Thus saving millions of pounds in tax payers money and having a Forest for everyone to enjoy.  Good luck with the campaign".

Cllr Di Brooks, Totton West District Ward

"The proposals by the National Park have been shown to have both serious flaws and to be unacceptable to those living in and adjacent to the New Forest however we are currently within the period of consultation and it can only be hoped that, in light of the consultation, they either provide additional evidence/information to support their proposals or re-draft the plan to incorporate the necessary amendments.

Given the deficiencies that are so evident it could easily prove necessary to extend the consultation period and look to initiating a series of public meetings in order that full consultation and representation can be made.

Personally I am unhappy with the explanatory note, issued by the National Park regarding horse grazing, as it will not makeup part of the plan and as such, should the plan be adopted, not have any weight. In my own mind the explanatory note confirmed that the policy failed to clearly express the authors intentions, whether or not one agrees with them, and that being so required redrafting".

Cllr Jeremy Heron, Ringwood South District Ward

"The NPA is a very powerful organisation that has, to date, not consultant with many local businesses. The draft proposal shows a lack of understanding of many important issues, and omits things like transport and infrastructure. I wonder whether the people at the top of the NPA have any empathy with the locals or care much about what they want or their ambitions. The only way people who work and live in the New Forest can communicate with such a powerful organisation is by speaking with one voice. And that voice must have the backing of an equally powerful organisation or it will not be heard. We must all work together and seek the backing of an organistion such as the Federation of Small Businesses who can provide the expertise and connections that will inevitably be required in order for the voice or ordinary folk to be heard"

Local Businessman Chris Robinson, Communicating, 10 October 2008

"I can confirm that the Federation of Small Businesses New Forest Branch certainly has some concerns over the implications of the new draft Management Plan, and as the FSB were not invited to the consultation workshops in 2007/2008 we feel we are not adequately represented. We also note that the involvement of the New Forest Business Partnership, to which many of our members also belong, has been minimal. The FSB branch committee are currently reviewing thedocument with a view to submitting our comments to the NPA and also planning to make the FSB known to the NPA as a potential channel of communication to the business community.

We are keen to ensure that the significant implications to Business of the policies proposed do not get lost in the current wave of emotion over issues such as dog walking and horse keeping. We support the call for a wider consultation process than the closed door workshops which have taken place and agree that the thinking behind some of the proposed policies needs more detailed explanation than they get in the draft Plan. It seems appropriate to campaign for some wider public meetings".

Rob Dewing, Chairman, FSB New Forest Branch

(215,000 members Nationally)

"This is just to confirm that your movement of ONE VOICE has my complete support and that I agree fully with the sentiments expressed in your first edition. The NAP Plan Consultation Draft Document seems to me to be ill thought out without  any consideration for either the People of the New Forest and surrounding areas and  in many respects is completely impracticable. It is essential that the length of time for consultation be increased to enable all the community time to express their thoughts about the various aspects that have been raised in this document".

Cllr. Paul R Woods, Becton District Ward

"The call from One Voice for improved consultation is a very reasonable one. At present, many people who live in, work in, or enjoy the New Forest for leisure purposes are feeling very threatened by new proposals that will change the nature of the area. A better dialogue is what is needed and the sooner the National Park Authority accept this, the better".

Cllr. David Harrison, Leader, Liberal Democrat Group, NFDC

"Thank you for inviting me to write to ONE VOICE expressing concern about the thrust of their various consultations.  We need to be clear about what we object to: the time for consultation – they already exceed what they need to do to comply with statute or more importantly the two documents – Recreational Management Strategy & the National Park Management Plan & Local Development Framework Core Strategy, both of which articulate assumptions & goals that need to be challenged.

 The County as the Highway Authority & provider of other overarching services is not happy with significant elements of the documents, neither is the New Forest Local Strategic Partnership – an umbrella organisation including the NPA, Police, PCT, NFDC, Social Housing & the business community, that impressed with the tone of the documents either.  The main concern is that not  proper weight has been given to sustaining & promoting the social & economic  well being of the whole area; the NPA & the rest of the District are like a Siamese twin, both support each other & each adjust to changes. And the pursuit of the NPA’s two principal functions without recognition of the context will harm the larger partner & consign the NPA to being a very expensive, aging ghetto & a permanent irritant to all those who live around it"

Cllr Nigel Clarke, Conservative Member for Ringwood

 "Thank you for the opportunity of commenting on the N.F.N.P.A's draft proposal consultation.

having just returned from the Wilverley meeting today I am only to aware of the strength of feeling against the various proposals contained within this vast document and the very short time in which the so called consultation has to take place. 

, The many banners shown today said most of what people were thinking or saying but I will quote one in particular it said   Npa Unelected.Unacountable Undemocratic Unacceptable ...

Having been born and raised  in the forest I  have seen it change over the years and I, as do many other  locals feel that it had changed for the better or at least it did until the national park was formed and control transferred from local elected and accountable councillors to this unelected group.

The way forward could either be return the forest to the locals ,the verderers and the forestry commission or let the NPA be made up of elected district and parish councillors then perhaps the NPA would be accountable through the ballot box at least once every four years.

I hope we all can make our voices heard against these ridiculous proposals.  Regards and good luck".

Cllr Chris Lagdon, Totton East Ward

"Please be assured that you have my full support in your battle with the NPA. Today I attended the excellent Rally at Wilverley along with hundreds of others. Although I am not a horse or dog owner myself I support the many constituents who are. I am opposed to the several other unnecessary restrictions being proposed in the current consultation document such as road tolls. I very much hope that the government will disband the NPA quango and return the powers to the elected councils".

Cllr. Derek Tipp, Ashurst, Copythorne South and Netley Marsh District ward