LEAVE. Really?

On June 26, 2016, in Uncategorized, by vic

The big issue (what could be bigger? A declaration of war, maybe). My view on this is basically that we have been persuaded to leave the Path to the Wicket Gate, and have landed in the Slough of Despond (to misquote Pilgrim’s Progress). Why did we leave the Path?
• Cameron was pushed into a referendum, with hindsight, he / they did not foresee the consequences if LEAVE won (they saw no chance of that), and they had no Plan B
• With hindsight again, a simple majority decision was completely wrong; it should have been defined as guidance for the government in charge, not an inviolate instruction
• LEAVE misled everyone with unfounded optimism, lack of risk assessment, even lies; REMAIN played a defensive game, with no positive strategy, they thought that would suffice.
• Such a huge existential decision cannot be decided on a decision, in a flawed vote, of just over 50%
• Many LEAVE voters are now saying they did not expect to win; or they voted just to kick the government, or the whole political class – not to answer the question on the ballot paper.
In a short few days since the vote, some of the muted predictions of gloom have already appeared – the £ drops like a stone; stock markets also; big companies are talking about moving out. It looks bad.
From an environmental viewpoint, it appears catastrophic. Economic necessity will be everything, environmental concerns disregarded, EU environmental legislation lost altogether
For Wales, no-one believes the generations of EU grants will be replaced by any UK government; unemployment is likely to rise, perhaps steeply, house prices drop (good for some, but few will be able to afford even lower prices), farmers will fare even worse, food, fuel, and much more will increase in price, flights and holidays will be particularly expensive. Can tax rises be avoided?
Maybe there will be an election, and a government pledged to reconsider will be elected; maybe the petition for a re-run referendum will achieve the purpose; maybe Scotland will hold up the UK decision. Maybe aliens will land and give us a larger problem. I hope so (except the latter)

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On December 22, 2015, in Uncategorized, by vic

Dear Earth Environment – I know you are having a difficult time, what with us polluting the air and water, concreting chunks of countryside, poisoning pollinators, destroying wlldlife habitats, using up non-renewables, wasting energy  …. but some of us humans are trying to change things, and persuade others that you need more life support.

It should be straightforward, because if we lose you, it is also curtains for us, but some humans only think short-term, ignoring even their own future generations. Can you believe that?

So we’ll keep on making the case for you, old friend, and we do have some hope – the Climate Change Conference in Paris recently was pretty good. I’m working for you in Wales. Maybe we’ll both have a Happy New Year.   Vic



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#GivingTuesday – can you support CPRW?

On November 30, 2015, in Uncategorized, by vic




There are many wonderful landscapes in Wales,

but threats to the countryside and rural life keep appearing

                                                                                                                                                                              Copyright Visit Wales

CPRW is the only independent charity working to protect rural Wales, as it has been for over 80 years. But it needs help, so we are taking part in #GivingTuesday (Dec 1st). This is a global day to remember a charity for Christmas, and we hope you will support CPRW. Please use the day (or shortly after) to join us, or support the work we do through a donation.

You can read about CPRW and donate on our website (above), or you can text us a small donation from your mobile phone via JustGiving – text 70070 and write CPRW28 £5 (or whatever amount you wish). The donation is added to your phone bill. And / or, donate whilst you buy online – see the ‘Support Us’ section of the CPRW website.

Also an opportunity – if you are connected with a business, we are seeking sponsors for an edition of our glossy magazine ‘Rural Wales – get a message to our 1500 readers all over Wales

To give you a few examples of successful CPRW campaigns over the years: -

  • 2015 – Mid-Wales Wind Farms Inquiry – Energy minister Andrea Leadsom refused planning permission for four major onshore wind farms. CPRW was a major player in the campaign.

  • 2004 – New bridge over the River Monnow opens. CPRW Monmouthshire (John Edwards) was instrumental in re-siting it away from the great medieval gated bridge

  • 1995 – Usk Barrage – CPRW was a leading objector, the proposal was refused.

  • 1984 – Saltmarshes at Pembry saved from development by CPRW Pembrokeshire branch

  • 1976 – A55 crossing of River Dee planned as a bridge, but changed to a tunnel, so the  estuary beauty and castle view were saved by CPRW Conwy branch, led by Lady White

But the list above is a small part of the daily efforts of our campaigning. For example, Newport & Valleys branch, with a small committee, dealt with 14 proposals in the first 9 months of this year; whilst our professional Director debates & lobbies on national policy in the Assembly, Cardiff Bay.

If you also care about Wales, please join or donate to CPRW – and If you’re not local, then #GivingTuesday is a great reminder to come and visit our wonderful Wales!