Forest Pines saved for now

Woodland Trust is delighted that North Lincolnshire Council Planning Committee yesterday rejected the planning application for a golf course within Gadbury & Lundimore Woods near Broughton. The vote was disappointingly close, but in the end supported the planning officer recommendation to reject the application on the basis that the loss of this important block of ancient woodland was simply not outweighed by the economic benefits that the proposed golf course would bring to the area.

Some of the comments made in the committee discussion prior to the decision by those supporting the construction of the golf course, sadly betrayed a limited understanding about the need to protect ancient woodland as a scarce resource and the management of woodlands generally.

There is a strong chance of an Appeal against the decision, but we are now preparing our case for this. We are confident that an independent Planning Inspector will uphold the decision, on the basis that the proposed golf course extension, whilst leaving some trees and blocks of woodland standing, would substantially change the character of the existing habitat to the extent that it would irreversibly then lose its ancient woodland characteristics.

Find out about our experiences at the public inquiry in our previous blogs ‘Its a bit like LA law this week’ and ‘Bring it on’.

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9 Responses to Forest Pines saved for now

  1. M Johnson says:

    I felt it necessary to update this a little since it has been a while since the last post!

    I shall also quote and correct a few statements first.
    […However, this golf course is already huge, and it is exclusive – only members have access to it. ”
    This indeed is not the case at all. It is a public course, and anyone that has a proven handicap can play the course…]

    […Any substantial loss of trees would cause an increase in dust, gas, noise and light pollution to the areas east of the woods which would have a detrimental effect on the people living there…]

    Likewise with the steel works that Corus has so generously provided and gives much needed employment (although lots of pollution and less employment recently) Forest Pines is a large local employer. Many of employees that work at the hotel are in fact Broughton residents. Surely we should welcome investment in these current conditions, especially one that will create jobs?

    […Having prevented the “appropriation” of part of the Woods by the grand larcenist of corporate leisure, it would be disgraceful if North Lincolnshire Council were not to put some of OUR money where its mouth is, to buy, properly manage, and let us ALL enjoy the benefits on our doorstep…]

    The woodland Trust themselves have more than enough money to purchase the woods themselves and have chosen specifically not to. They have been asked to join the planning process and have also not done so. Their independent ecological survey even came to the same conclusions as the hotels, a course would be a positive impact. Read into that what you will.

    All i really wish to say is that yes, losing a part of woodland would be a real shame. I have no hesitation in admitting that. I also think, that yes, unfortunately money sometimes does talk.

    However, upon closer inspection, part of the planning application commits the resort to managing ALL of the remaining woodland. Now on the basis that it is overgrown and full of alot of dead, falling and vandalized trees, has very poor drainage, is over run by youths drinking and very few facilities. Is this not positive??
    Would us Broughton residents not want to have a nice bit of woodland to walk around? (given most of it has no public access anymore anyway!)
    Besides, the application also allows for a footpath through the new development so we can all see it….. the hotel have nothing to hide, they WANT us be a part of it, and are prepared to put back into the local woods as much as they take.
    (They have also pledged to replace the trees they remove and keep all of the most healthy and valuable trees)

    I’ll leave it there, but please please please, read the application in full and you may be surprised.

  2. Pingback: What is it about Golf Courses and Ancient Woods? «

  3. Tim O'Dea says:

    I’ve counted six golf courses in and around the Scunthorpe area, so one assumes the question: Why build another one? Surely six 18 hole golf courses is enough to challenge and delight even the most seasoned of golfers in the UK. I’ve seen one that looks like a decent links course and several others that would have the PGATour salivating with anticipation, with narrow fairways between the pines and secluded greens nestled in cul-de-sacs of oak and beech. I mean, even I would get excited at the prospect of hitting a small ball around these wonders. do they REALLY need another? Answer: NO!

  4. A Taylor says:

    Bill Watson states that golf courses can be environmentally friendly places which is true, especially if they are in built up areas. However, this golf course is already huge, and it is exclusive – only members have access to it.

    This is not the only issue; these woods play an important role in sheltering Broughton, Brigg and part the Ancholme valley from the noise and pollution of the (very) nearby Corus steel plant. Any substantial loss of trees would cause an increase in dust, gas, noise and light pollution to the areas east of the woods which would have a detrimental effect on the people living there.

    Woodland is such a relatively rare environment in Lincolnshire that it is essential that Broughton woods is protected to be worked, enjoyed and regenerated for the future.

  5. Colin Drury says:

    Together with the nearby Twigmoor Woods, the Manby Estate (better known locally as Broughton Woods) is the jewel in the tarnished ecological crown of North Lincolnshire.

    Having prevented the “appropriation” of part of the Woods by the grand larcenist of corporate leisure, it would be disgraceful if North Lincolnshire Council were not to put some of OUR money where its mouth is, to buy, properly manage, and let us ALL enjoy the benefits on our doorstep.

    Nobody would object to this, I’m sure, and what a joy it would be (to us and to them) to know that our elected representatives acted in accord with all of us who put them there…

  6. Bill Watson says:

    It sounds like the ‘problem’ with the golf course is not over yet.

    Golf courses can be very environmentally friendly areas. (I am not a golfer.) Is it not possible to help with the planning so that some of the best locations are untouched? It is in their intersts as well as ours to make the course as attractive as possible. A condition of cooperation instead of opposition would of course be that double the area under discussion would be purchased locally to develope new woodland on behalf of a local trust or the Woodland Trust.

    There could be a significant gain for wildlife in the long term.

    Bill Watson

  7. Derrick Robinson says:

    The decision to reject the application is very welcome indeed but Q Hotels will no doubt appeal. Local people ought to boycott the golf course & pricey restaurants if they do.

    Maybe the trust should write to each councillor with information that improves their knowledge of how precious ancient woodland is. Trouble is, money always shouts the loudest.

    It is about time all ancient woodland received statutory protection which means all applications are automatically rejected with no right of appeal.

    I live in Belton to the west of Scunthorpe (20 or so miles from Broughton) and apart from the trees in my garden the nearest tree directly behind my property is about 1 mile away. This local former wetland area is an environmental desert with little wildlife around.

  8. Gary Glover says:

    As Kaye has said this decision is very welcome. Congratulations to all who have objected to the application.

    My family and I are Broughton residents and the Woodlands have been an integral part of life locally, despite the fact that Gadbury and Lundimore woods are private woodland with no agreed public access.

    The woodlands to the North of Lundimore and Gadbury woods, “The Manby Estate” do have limited public access via the two Public Footpaths recognised by the North Lincolnshire “definitive map” for Broughton available from North Lincolnshire Councils website.

    In April 2008, the Trust which owns these woodlands revoked the public access agreement that had been in place previously and effectively closed legal access for the public to the Mandby Estate woodland, except for the public footpaths mentioned above.

    This woodland estate has now been advertised as for sale through Savills in Lincoln.

    The details are available from their Website.

    There is now a fantastic opportunity to secure this Ancient Woodland Estate, one of the largest in Lincolnshire for future generations to enjoy.

    I would urge the Woodland Trust to do whatever it can to secure ownership, co-ownership, or at least establish a permanent right of public access, supported by an appropriate management system to make “The Manby Estate” one of the premium green space locations in Lincolnshire.

  9. Kaye Brennan says:

    This result is very welcome locally as well – check out an update from Frazer in the local Brigglife website:

    http://www.brigglife.co.uk/xpage.php?page=12&art=231&local=y

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