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Preservation society joins fight to save Welsh Harp reservoir

PUBLISHED: 13:26 29 December 2009 | UPDATED: 16:40 07 September 2010

The Open Spaces Society, founded in Victorian times originally to save London s open spaces, has joined the campaign against development on metropolitan open land adjoining the popular Welsh Harp reservoir, on the boundaries of the London Boroughs of Barn

The Open Spaces Society, founded in Victorian times originally to save London's open spaces, has joined the campaign against development on metropolitan open land adjoining the popular Welsh Harp reservoir, on the boundaries of the London Boroughs of Barnet and Brent.

The society has backed the pressure group, Save Our Remaining Bits of Green, and has submitted a strong objection to both boroughs against development of the greenspace for housing.

Says Kate Ashbrook, general secretary of the Open Spaces Society: 'It is outrageous that this wonderful green lung should be desecrated with over 160 houses. This open space is of vital importance, for residents and visitors from further afield. They treasure the Welsh Harp reservoir and its surroundings, for quiet recreation and bird watching. This green space is invaluable and irreplaceable.

Furthermore, the Capital Ring long-distance path goes along the edge of the reservoir, and would be severely and adversely affected by the development, as would other public paths in the vicinity.

'We have urged both councils to reject these damaging applications,' says Kate.

The Open Spaces Society (formally the Commons, Open Spaces and Footpaths Preservation Society) was founded in 1865 and is Britain's oldest national conservation body. It campaigns to protect common land, village greens, open spaces and public paths, and people's right to enjoy them.

The proposed development, by Malcolm Scott, consists of two planning applications: one to Barnet, for 90 houses at Woodfield Nursery, Cool Oak Lane, and one to Brent, for 71 houses at Greenwood Garden Centre, Birchen Grove. The closing date for objections is 26 November.


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