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Camberley’s unknown Conservation Area

 

 

 

 

 

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Do you know where this is?  Well -I have to confess that I became a little excited when I saw part of this ‘jungle’ being cleared a couple of weeks ago. Recognise it now? You will if you’re a member of Arena Leisure Centre.  Did you know that much of the area of woodland between the A30 and the RMA fence is a Conservation Area? This forms part of the Camberley West SCC Division, which I represent as a County Councillor. So -why was I so exited? Well – it occurred to me some years ago that residents in the many flats along A30 between Arena & Meadows have precious few places on their doorsteps to take a stroll or walk their dog, apart from the Recreation Ground off Southwell Park Road. Who can blame them for walking on our beloved Heathland if they have nowhere else close-by to go? So I started to make enquiries, starting with  English Heritage, asking if it would be a good idea to use part of this area as an Amenity Area. By clearing some of the shrubbery, creating a few sitting area, paths; perhaps including some wooden exercises (as we have in Lightwater Country Park), we could create a little space suitable for walking small dogs, & generally relaxing – well better than nothing if you live in a flat with no garden! (Bear in mind we’ll probably have even more flats on the cinema & Duke of York sites, and in the currently empty office blocks). Next I invited Natural England to Camberley & showed them the area, and told them of my idea. I explained that this could be a SANG, (ie a suitable alternative green space to mitigate for new residential developments), that people might actually use for walking their dogs, unlike some SANGs that are pretty well unused, like Diamond Hill Woods SANG. Their reply – NO!  This unused Conservation Area in the heart of Camberley which is crying out for someone to love it is the WRONG SHAPE FOR A SANG!  Never mind, I still think I have the outline of a pretty good idea -which is why I became excited when I saw a space being cleared. Has someone listened to me? Not yet I fear!


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