Huhne backs community woodland

Eastleigh's MP likes a stroll through here too.

Eastleigh’s MP Chris Huhne has declared his support in the fight to keep Stoke park woods in the public domain.

Recently it was revealed the well used, much loved local woodland that lies between Bishopstoke and Fair Oak will put up for sale by the government

Writing in response to campaigner Robert Byrne, Mr Huhne – who said he has enjoyed walking in the woods himself – described Stoke Park as:

“A beautiful wood with a varied landscape” adding he was “determined to ensure they remain available for the use and benefit of the local community”

Mr Huhne also said he had brought the matter to the attention of the Environment Secretary Caroline Spellman who assured him that local areas of woodland like Stoke Park are:

“Extremely valuable in terms of the recreational and environmental benefits they offer. Accordingly we will offer first refusal to community bodies or civil society organisations and give them preferred status in taking over these sites”

Mr Byrne who had also written to the Prime Minster and local Council Leader Keith House of his concerns – both of whom have yet to reply – said he was pleased to read of Mr Huhne’s determination adding:

” I believe Chris is being as helpful as he can be… but I don’t believe a wood the size of Stoke Park can be managed by a community body or civil society successfully and to the same standard as the Forestry Commission. It’s a matter of resources.”

According to the Guardian newspaper, the cost of buying Forestry Commission land could be as low as £3,500 a hectare – this would put a £347K price tag on Stoke Park – less than the cost of the Councils annual subsidy to the Point theatre.

Mr Byrne has now emailed all of Eastleigh’s councillors to try and sound out support for a council backed initiative to secure the future of the woodland for the community.

  6 comments for “Huhne backs community woodland

  1. Peter Stewart UKIP EASTLEIGH
    February 7, 2011 at 8:35 pm

    That’s odd. I thought Chris had voted to approve the sell off. Here’s the text of the email I got from 38 degrees:

    “From the postcode you put in when you signed the petition, it looks like you live in Eastleigh constituency. That means your MP voted against a rethink of the sell-off plans. So now’s the time to get back in touch. Let’s tell them we noticed how they voted, and will be keeping up the pressure until they start standing up for our woodlands”.

    So now I’m right puzzled! Did Chris vote to oppose the sell off or did he not?

  2. easypeasy
    February 7, 2011 at 9:29 pm

    What? Do you mean this vote here? 😉

    http://tinyurl.com/686u29b

  3. Matthew Myatt
    February 7, 2011 at 11:33 pm

    O come on..!!

    Did you really think Mr Huhne would stand by his world and not do something completely different when he thought no one was looking..

    Hmmmmmmm, let me think for a min.!!

    Lets See,

    A dedicated Family Man
    Nuclear Power Stations
    Support for Woodlands
    Student Fee’s

    Nope, he is true to the form he always has been. Says one thing, does another..!! That’s our boy.

    • mm
      Eastleigh Xpress
      February 7, 2011 at 11:57 pm

      One of the nice things about Eastleigh News is now that it’s one years old, you can look back 12 months and see what was happening last year.
      Last February Mr Huhne was visitng Quilley to open their new Sports Hall and was saying what a jolly good thing sports for kids was. Of course that was when he was in opposition.
      Come November he has only gone and voted in support of the Government policy to “remove funding from the Youth Sport Trust, cut specialist sports schools and dismantle School Sport Partnerships.” 🙁

      http://tinyurl.com/66wtfzu

  4. February 8, 2011 at 2:32 pm

    Stephen – Congratulations for running for a year, many people in Eastleigh follow your web site. What will the second year bring I wonder.

    More of our MP Chris Huhne saying on thing and doing the opposite protecting his own self interest, yet when asked about our MPs double standards we get the “Rome wasnt built in day” or “if we had to start we wouldnt have started from here” quotes that mean nothing but avoids our MP answering for his actions.

    The 16 Easteligh Lib dems Councillors who signed the letter against the Student fees are concerned, several of them have said to me how unhappy they are with the Tory led Coalition.

    Whats next Please tell us your plans Mr Huhne we are ready to listen, Dont say one thing in Eastleigh and Vote something different in Parliament, thats the old Lib dems not the new Politics you promised at the election in 2010.

    Eastleigh will lose out if Stoke park woods is sold to a trust, its not for the benefit of locals as one New Forest MP quoted in Parliament, Shame on Mr Huhne come clean for once and say what you will do “keeping stoke park woods in the public domain” is not a guarranttee

  5. Anne Romaine
    February 8, 2011 at 6:06 pm

    I predict that Chris Huhne and his Lib Dem councillors are now so panicked about Stoke Park Woods that they’ll start a petition to save it, completely ignoring the fact he voted for the Forestry Commission sell off plans. Remember, you heard it here first!!!

Comments are closed.