Category: Devon

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Plymouth City Council’s ‘consultation’ fail

Ali White Founder, STRAW Plymouth

Recently, Sheffield City Council issued an apology to the courts to whom they lied during the tree felling debacle. This follows on from apologies to the people of Sheffield and personal apologies to the tree campaigners. Sadly, no individuals ever took responsibility for this shocking episode, and nobody in charge fell on their sword. In […]

Dartmoor is leaking – carbon, biodiversity and actual water…

Harry Barton

The much-anticipated Independent Review of Protected Site Management on Dartmoor was published on 13 December 2023. It was overshadowed by the COP28 deal, but locally it’s just as significant: after all, Dartmoor is by far the largest area managed for wildlife in the south-west, and its peat bogs hold carbon stores equivalent to an entire […]

Dartmoor Review: yes, but where’s the urgency?

Tony Whitehead

Dartmoor Environmental campaigner Tony Whitehead looks at the Independent Review of Protected Site Management on Dartmoor published this week and asks whether it will help nature restoration in this precious landscape …  When I first skimmed through the Independent Review of Protected Site Management on Dartmoor that was published this week, my initial reaction was […]

Dartmoor at risk!

Jim Funnell

Does Lib Dem-led South Hams Council know what the Freeport really means for our wild spaces? Jim Funnell questions whether the council is in control of the full facts… Last week I wrote to all the South Hams councillors with wards bordering on Dartmoor. I expressed my concern that South Hams District Council has failed […]

PART II: Has South Hams District Council lost credibility?

Jim Funnell

As the reality of the libertarian Freeport experiment unleashed on Plymouth and South Devon comes to weigh heavily on the shoulders of South Hams Council, the Task & Finish Group internal report (which will be discussed in Council Executive on Thursday 30 November) highlights issues of substantial concern. I unpack the concerns in detail in […]

Five key tests for the panel on the Dartmoor inquiry

Harry Barton

Dartmoor is one of England’s most treasured landscapes and important wildlife havens.  Just as the brooding hills, hidden valleys and spectacular tors delight visitors year-round, the oak woodlands, heath, bog and mires are home to many species that are vanishing elsewhere – including golden plover, curlew, high brown fritillary and countless rare insects, plants and […]

‘If volunteers went on strike, half the country would collapse’ – The Crafty Fox Cafe’n’Hub on the Foxhole Road

Anthea Simmons

I ran into Robbie while campaigning for the South Devon Primary. Robbie’s controlled anger and frustration with the current state of affairs was mirrored in a democracy meter filling up with the stickers that represented people’s view of the current government – not positive. At all. A resident of this rather run-down estate, she explained […]

Plymouth and South Devon Freeport – the official response

Editor-in-chief

As those who attended last night’s session, either in person or via YouTube, will know, we empty-chaired representation from the Plymouth and South Devon Freeport. Towards the end of the session, a Liberal Democrat councillor pointed out that an official response had been sent at 15:50 on the day of the event , which started […]

Freeports: what does it mean to live in a freeport or special economic zone and does it matter? Event TOMORROW live-streamed

Editor-in-chief

What exactly is ‘one of the largest economic development projects in the South Hams’ – and why has no-one heard much about it? Why did South Hams District Council enter into a legally binding agreement with multi-million pound risks and liabilities over a year ago without asking its tax-paying residents? Is anyone pulling the strings of […]

Save Seaton Hospital!

Editor-in-chief

Why this petition matters The petition was started by Seaton resident, Martin Shaw, who explains why it’s needed: The Seaton area community paid half of the cost of building the Hospital in the 1980s. The NHS agreed to own and run it with NHS services for the local community. In 1991, a new wing was […]

Raising the spirit of Old Crockern

Tony Whitehead

On Saturday September 30, around 300 people gathered at Princetown to show their passion for creating a wilder Dartmoor.  The “March for Wild Dartmoor” was organised by Wildcard, a growing grassroots movement of ordinary people, campaigners and experts who want to put pressure on the country’s biggest landowners to commit to ambitious rewilding projects as […]

Credit where debit is due… North Devon MP, Selaine Saxby

Ian Jacques

Local households recently received a letter from Selaine Saxby, our North Devon MP, which contained a petition to complain about dentistry, or lack of it, in North Devon. I also note that she asked a question in the House of Commons on the same subject in July 2022. You can look at this in two ways: […]

Freeports : a pathway to the end of government as we know it

Richard Murphy

I have been asked on here if I have ever looked at the benefits of freeports. The honest answer is no, but that is because I have never been able to find any such benefits. I have, however, looked at the massive downsides to this idea that both Sunak and Truss support. It is important […]

Conspiracy theorists awake – and are heading to a town near you

Tom Scott

When Russell Brand issued his pre-emptive denial in an attempt to get ahead of the horrendous allegations of rape and sexual assault aired by The Times and Channel 4’s Dispatches on Saturday, he addressed his 6.6 million YouTube subscribers with the words: “Hello there, you awakening wonders.” It’s Brand’s standard greeting to his followers and […]

Campaigners defy wild swimming ban on Dartmoor

Lewis Winks

Signs were put up across the 4,000 acre Spitchwick Estate on Dartmoor this summer forbidding swimming along 17km of the River Dart, including at popular beauty spots. Forty right to roam campaigners held a ‘protest swim’ at Spitchwick on Sunday 10 September in defiance of the ban. Groups included Right to Roam, The Stars Are […]

Calling Devon residents! Your help needed to tell Devon County Council to sort its banking arrangements!

Anthea Simmons

Local community organisation, Exeter Community Alliance, is highlighting Devon County Council’s (DCC) current climate-messaging inconsistency. On the one hand, DCC’s own website tells local concerned citizens to be ethical and green in their choice of bank saying: “Finding banks with a strong ethical investment policy is an amazing way to make sure that your money […]