Skip to content

CPRE manifesto for the next UK government launched

5th June 2024

CPRE Hampshire are calling on all Hampshire candidates standing in the 4th July 2024 Election to read our Manifesto which calls for a Thriving Countryside For All!

2024 looks set to be the year of an era-defining election, with the new government facing a myriad of environmental crises as well as a broken housing market. 

We’re calling on all political parties to recognise the true value of the countryside and its vital role in answering the nation’s challenges – with a focus on the four common sense and practical policies summarised below. 

Read our manifesto

1. A planning system for people, planet and nature

The next Prime Minister will have to take decisions to overcome multiple, interlinked challenges. The cost of living, food security, energy, housing – each of critical importance.

Above all, tackling the climate and nature crises, which pose an existential threat to our countryside, will have enormous implications for land use across the nation.

We will only be able to balance these competing demands and save our countryside for future generations with a clear plan for what to put where. 

That’s why we need a planning system with democracy at its heart, and which prioritises outcomes that prevent climate and ecological collapse.

2. Fixing the broken housing system for rural communities

A healthy home is the foundation for a decent life.

But over the years our broken housing system has changed a home from a human right into an investment product, depriving towns, cities and rural communities of genuinely affordable homes.

In the countryside, the situation is particularly acute and many people are now unable to afford to live in the communities that they grew up in.

3. Recognise the importance of our Countryside

Our county is home to two national parks: the South Downs and the New Forest. Our chalk streams are one of the rarest habitats on earth and of international importance. 38% of our county is nationally protected for the quality of its landscape.

But too often our Hampshire countryside is undervalued and sometimes seen as little more than a block on new development or infrastructure rather than somewhere important for the benefits it brings.

Away from the national parks, too little regard is paid to the value of the landscape in deciding where new development should be located. Our chalk rivers and streams and the underlying aquifers are suffering from pollution and over-extraction.

4. Rooftop renewables – a common sense revolution

To protect nature and our treasured landscapes, we have a duty to make the best possible use of our finite land.

But our outdated and expensive energy system is using up more and more of the space we need for food, wellbeing, and wildlife across our countryside.

Meanwhile, we are missing opportunities to generate huge amounts of cheap, low-carbon electricity on rooftops in every part of the country.

With the right initiatives, the rooftops of warehouses and car parks across the nation could act like clean power stations, cutting carbon emissions, slashing energy bills and protecting our countryside.

Next steps 

We want to place countryside, communities, climate and nature at the heart of the 2024 general election, and the first step is engaging with MPs at the party conferences. But it doesn’t stop there. We’ll be working hard to ensure that the issues raised in our manifesto are heard, and reflected in the manifesto of the next UK government. 

To learn more about CPRE, the countryside charity’s work to create a beautiful, thriving countryside visit