Many residents will not be aware that the District Council is currently preparing a new Local Plan. As part of the process, there are areas that are currently designated as Green Belt (and therefore protected from development) which have been put forward for consideration to be released for future development.
The focus of this post is the land is next to the Stonards Hill Recreation ground and stretches along Stonards Hill up to the Epping – Ongar Railway line and backs onto the St Margarets Hospital site.
Epping residents have enjoyed access across this land as though it was a public open space for as long as anybody can remember. The Town Council’s staff see residents accessing the land from the Recreation Ground on a daily basis to walk dogs, walks to Coopersale, picnics in the summer or sledging in the winter when there is snow.
The Town Council is seeking to protect the land for future generations by applying to have it registered as a Common.
This is where they need your help. To qualify for registration, they must be able to evidence that “a significant number of the inhabitants of any locality, or of any neighbourhood within a locality, have indulged as of right in lawful sports and pastimes on the land for a period of at least 20 years”
They are looking for Local Residents (or former Local Residents) who use or who have used this land for recreation to come forward and provide evidence to support their application. Please tell friends and family who use the land for recreation to do the same.
Registration as a Common would protect the land from development and ensure the right of residents to use the land for recreation