Campaign to Protect Rural England Standing up for your countryside

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What we've achieved with our Charter to save the countryside

Taking our Charter to the Prime Minister Taking our Charter to the Prime Minister Photo: © CPRE / Stefano Cagnoni

Over the past two years we’ve been running our campaign to save the countryside and asking people to sign our Charter.

We now have 80,890 signatures from people all around the country - and we've taken our Charter to the Prime Minister to show the strength of public concern for the countryside we love.
Our letter to the Prime Minister to save the countryside

Government response to our Charter to save our countryside (53K PDF)

Support from far and wide

Save our countryside - your commentsMore than 11,000 people told us why they wanted to save the countryside. We're really touched to hear how passionate people are about it, from every corner of the globe. It’s widely recognised that England's countryside has a unique and special character that must be protected.
Read some Charter comments

What we've achieved

Bristol Finzels Reach, city centre developmentHere are just a few of our major successes that we've achieved with the help of thousands of campaigners.

Building on brownfield land first

  • We created a map of more than 400 ‘wasted spaces’ in towns across England supporting our research that revealed at least one million homes could be built on suitable brownfield land to help regenerate our towns.
  • We influenced the Government to give incentives worth close to £1billion to boost building on brownfield sites by creating new housing zones and regeneration funds.
  • We won a commitment to the establishment of a statutory register of brownfield sites, announced as part of the Queen’s Speech.
  • We secured new planning guidance asking local councils to accelerate the redevelopment of brownfield sites.

More housing - in the right places

  • Our local groups across the country have supported well-designed development that meets local needs and have fought off inappropriate developments that threaten precious countryside.
  • For example, CPRE Gloucestershire supported a well-designed housing scheme in Stroud, and CPRE Durham successfully fought off plans for 3,550 houses in the Green Belt, saving precious countryside. These are just two of our hard-won, local victories.

A fair say for communities

  • Through our network of local groups we've helped dozens of local communities to develop Neighbourhood Plans. And we've worked to strengthen support for them in planning decisions, giving people more say in shaping development where they live.
  • We helped persuade the Government to reconsider its plans to make it more difficult for communities to make a legal challenge on a planning decision.

Making our voice even stronger

The support we have had from thousands of campaingers has made our voice stronger in Parliament, helping us secure these and other successes. But we need to do more.

We now want the new Government to make a firm commitment to protecting the countryside by clearly prioritising the use of brownfield over greenfield land in national planning policy. We need to go on working in every part of England to defend our countryside from the wrong kind of development.

Please join us to help us save our countryside for now and future generations.

Join us today

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