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Creating a strategic vision for Leicestershire

Hungarton village from Bottom Green
Hungarton village from Bottom Green

Unlike many environmental charities, CPRE has no vested interests – we own no land, rely solely on donations and grants, and are politically independent.

We make decisions with the head not the heart, as much as we love the countryside, and we are possibly the only green group which has a completely holistic approach. Planning, in particular, is all about looking at the bigger picture, and our wide remit means we have to consider the whole of the country – rural and urban – when creating policy.

We want to see a protected countryside within the context of a healthier economy and a happier community, and we don’t think they are mutually exclusive. CPRE believes that people have the right to enjoy a protected countryside. We have the ambition to make it happen.

Achievements like rural planning, National Parks and Green Belts, green wedges and areas of separation between communities didn’t happen overnight; they took decades of campaigning, careful organisation and reasoned argument. At many stages they seemed impossible dreams, but now it is hard to imagine an England without them.

However, we could now easily lose these achievements. Leicestershire’s countryside is under threat from different developments. Once it has gone, it will not be possible to get it back.

We think

Better planning will reinvigorate towns and cities. Local people should be able to take an active role in planning our energy and transport infrastructure.

New life in the countryside will emerge through affordable housing, transport, vital services, and new business shaped by rural communities themselves.

Our landscapes should incorporate wilderness, woodlands, and wetlands, encouraging wildlife and allowing nature to become a barrier to climate change. Urban green spaces will link people in cities to our finest landscapes using green wedges and hedgerows as wildlife corridors.

Green energy should be in harmony with the landscape to benefit local communities and minimise damage to the environment. Buildings should be energy efficient and have close to zero-carbon emissions and wasteful light pollution should be a thing of the past.

Local food production will see farmers thrive and provide healthy, fresh and seasonal food for us all. Farmland must be recognised as far too valuable to build on – for its beauty as well as its productivity – and we need to get close to self-sufficiency in food, hugely reducing food miles.

We want to change attitudes so that beauty, tranquillity, green spaces and local distinctiveness and attachments to local landscapes will be valued and nurtured, making quality of life and wellbeing as important as financial prosperity and economic growth.

Please join us and stand up for Leicestershire with us!