Griff Rhys Jones lends support to local Green Belt campaign
Griff Rhys Jones, President of Civic Voice – and an active campaigner on civic and planning matters – has signed the Save the Cambridge Green Belt petition and sent a letter of support to the campaign group, as a direct result of liaison with local charity Cambridge Past, Present & Future (CambridgePPF).
In 2012, Griff Rhys Jones visited Cambridge to speak at an event hosted by CambridgePPF about the built environment and its impact on quality of life. At the event he spoke about changes in national planning policy; the green belt; his work for Civic Voice; and how civic societies (such as CambridgePPF) can encourage people to engage with their local community and get involved in decision making to help shape the future of the urban environment.
In his letter to the Save the Green Belt group, Griff said:
To the Cambridge Save The Green Belt Campaign
I am today signing your Petition and thereby lending my support to your campaign.
For a historic city like Cambridge, the Green Belt plays a vital role in the city’s future in protecting its green setting through preventing urban sprawl. A balance needs to be struck between growth that is essential to maintain Cambridge’s success and protecting the character of the city that makes it so special.
As there are viable alternatives for development, both brownfield sites in the urban area and outside the Green Belt in South Cambridgeshire, these should be developed first. The Green Belt should not be seen as a soft option but should be the option of last resort.
Griff Rhys jones
Jeremy Jones from the Save the Green Belt group said: “Cambridge is an amazing place – as is clear from Griff Rhys Jones’s comments, any time spent here leaves a wonderful, indelible imprint on our hearts and memories. We all welcome progress and success but have to ensure, for the sake of generations to come, that we don’t sacrifice the essential characteristics of the City in the pursuit of economic growth. The Green Belt was established by farsighted planners who knew that the temptation to allow sprawl when confronted by growth demands would put that compact nature of Cambridge at risk. We’re grateful to Griff Rhys Jones for signing the petition, as we are to the over 1700 others who have joined the campaign.”
Robin Pellew, Chairman of CambridgePPF, said: “It’s great that people like Griff are prepared to support the campaign to protect Cambridge’s Green Belt. As he appreciates, there is no justification for taking yet more Green Belt until all possible brownfield sites have been rigorously explored.”
The Save the Green Belt group is a coalition of residents groups from Cambridge and the nearby villages who have joined together to protect the city’s Green Belt.
To sign the Save the Green Belt petition, go to: www.greenbeltsos.org.uk.