Update: Test Valley District Group

27th April 2021

News from the Test Valley

The Test Valley District Group committee only deals with planning matters now as we have very few people to call on and would dearly like more members to be aware of this and volunteer to help with organising interesting events and visits for us all. Do contact us!

The planning scene has been very quiet during lockdown. Lots of trees have been felled or topped however, and lots of extensions applied for but as far as we can see no new large developments are in the frame.

John Moon has been keeping an eye on the Test Valley Green Belt motion which has been proposed to Test Valley Borough Council by Councillor Nick Adams-King. A South Hampshire Green Belt is part of CPRE Hampshire’s strategic vision for the county to ensure that green areas are retained specially in the south of the Borough. It was timed out of the first meeting of Test Valley Borough Council, but at the time of writing is on the agenda for the next, and we hope very much it will be discussed and passed. Do turn to the Campaigns Group report on page 8 of Hampshire Views to see more detail on this important move.

A continuing concern is the declining water quality in the Test and its tributaries. As with almost all other Hampshire rivers, it is suffering from inadequate control of the discharges from the various water treatment works in the borough and from agricultural run-off. The Environment Agency currently has no statutory timescale within which to improve the quality of our rivers, but it is hoped that a new parliamentary committee investigation into the problem of our rivers might invoke some action.

Green areas have been very important to all of us during lockdown. Most visitors love them and look after them, but it has been so saddening to see the way some people abuse them. Unhelpful and damaging car parking, litter, portable barbecues burning the plants, dogs out of control and dog mess, (even baby nappies stuffed in the bushes!) and this is even on SSSI’s (Sites of Special Scientific Interest). There are always helpful notices with rules and information on every site. Let’s keep our open spaces lovely.

This Easter with no holidays away allowed and varying restricted permissions to meet up outside, the pressure will be on managers and on nature. Leave nothing but memories, take nothing but photos, kill nothing but time!

Moya Grove, Test Valley District Group Secretary – moyagrove@gmail.com
John Moon, Test Valley District Group Acting Chair – john.moon@madasafish.com

Bluebells and stitchwort carpet Great Wood near Abbotts Ann John Moon
Children climbing in the New Forest