Public Consultation on the future of Stonehenge
There is a public consultation which all can participate in.
Please go to http://www.stonehengeconsultation.org and read through the documents containing the proposals, and use the feedback form to give your opinion.
"Stonehenge is perhaps England's most famous and important ancient monument, inscribed with Avebury as a World Heritage Site in 1986. The need to care for it properly has been recognised for many years, as has the need to improve its landscape setting and its presentation to visitors.
Publication of the World Heritage Site Management Plan in 2000 was an important step forward; at its heart was a vision of Stonehenge surrounded by open grassland. Two major projects were planned to support this: to remove the roads from around Stonehenge by placing the A303 in a tunnel, and to relocate visitor facilities to a new centre away from the Stones. Public Inquiries were held into each, and the outcomes reviewed at length.
Although the Government decided that the A303 road improvements were unaffordable, it has made a commitment in December 2007 to review the Management Plan as the overarching strategic document for the Site, and to complete environmental improvements at Stonehenge, including new visitor facilities, in time for the 2012 Olympics.
This work includes examination of the case for closing the A303/ A344 junction to improve the setting of Stonehenge. A new Stonehenge Project Board, chaired by the Ministers for Culture and for Transport, has been set up to oversee this work.
These proposals are now the subject of a three month public consultation until 17 October 2008."
HAVE YOUR SAY
You can read more about this consultation by viewing the pages of this website, downloading literature in PDF formats (see right hand column) and by visiting the public exhibition (see: http://www.stonehengeconsultation.org/publicexhibition.html).
After reading through the proposals, have you say by completing the electronic feedback forms indicated below:
WHS Management Plan Feedback form: http://www.stonehengeconsultation.org/haveyoursaywhspl.html
Environmental Improvements Feedback form: http://www.stonehengeconsultation.org/haveyoursayoptio.html
Legal dispute overturns quarrying permission
PLANS for a controversial quarry extension near Thornborough Henges have been thrown into disarray following a legal challenge.
Tarmac Northern won planning permission in January 2007 from North Yorkshire County Council to extract 1.1 million tonnes of sand and gravel over eight years from land at Ladybridge Farm, between Bedale and Ripon, half a mile from the nearest of three Bronze Age earthwork henges on Thornborough Moor.
Tarmac said the unanimous decision would ensure the future prospects of 15 full-time quarry workers and 40 hauliers at the neighbouring Nosterfield quarry, where reserves are almost exhausted.
The henges, described as the Stonehenge of the North, have legal protection as a scheduled ancient monument but worried campaigners who organised a 10,000-name petition insisted that their surroundings, including Ladybridge, must be protected from the effects of further quarrying.
The formal decision notice was not issued until October following completion of a detailed agreement with Tarmac covering conditions attached to the permission.
However, council lawyers have now confirmed that it should be quashed following a legal challenge on eight grounds concerning the handling of the planning application. The issue is expected to be reconsidered by the committee at Masham Town Hall on April 22.
A spokeswoman for pressure group, Friends of Thornborough, said it challenged the decision in the name of one of its members.
She said: ''A number of faults were identified in the way the county council had made their decision.
They agree they have got it wrong on three counts and have agreed to the quashing of the decision through the judicial review procedure.
''There are still five grounds outstanding which remain to be challenged and on that score they should be extremely careful when they take their decision at the meeting due to take place on April 22.'' Gordon Gresty, the council's director of business and environmental services, said: ''This development has had a contentious history and the legal challenge needs to be seen against the background of the wide range of issues the committee took into account when it made its decision. Those issues were properly and comprehensively considered.
''However, in order to avoid further legal proceedings we have agreed to the quashing of the present planning approval and it would be our intention to take the issue back to the committee in the future.'' Some preliminary work has been done at Ladybridge, but mineral extraction has not yet started.
A Tarmac spokesman said: ''We understand that following legal submissions, the planning consent is no longer in effect.
We hope that a corrected report will be placed before the committee at the earliest opportunity. Meanwhile, we have stopped work at the Ladybridge site.''
Petition to Save the Thornborough Henges
Please take the time to support the Thornborough Henges by signing the petition here: http://www.petitiononline.com/TimeW1/petition.html
"The quarry application is going to be decided within the next couple of months and we want our government to have a clear statement that we think this is wrong.
If you take a minute to view the animation on the TimeWatch homepage (http://www.timewatch.org)you will get a good idea of what we are complaining about.
N.B. The Petition is international."
(a quote of Hengist's plea to sign the Thornborough Henges Petition: http://www.brigantesnation.com/index.html)