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Case study: Greenwoods New Town

This case study shows how CPRE Bedfordshire works with local action groups to help them build a case when objecting to proposed developments.


The outline application for Greenwoods, essentially a new town on countryside east of the A6 near Barton Le Clay, included 3850 dwellings plus associated amenities.  A significant proportion of the proposed development was within the Green Belt and setting of the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.


What did CPRE Bedfordshire do?

CPRE Bedfordshire were very much involved with the campaign against the Greenwoods development and worked with the Local Action Group “Say no to Greenwoods New Town” and seven parish councils adjacent to the proposed site. John English, Planning Volunteer and Trustee, represented CPRE Bedfordshire on the steering committee to advise on their approach to the campaign and planning matters. CPRE Bedfordshire also submitted their own objection.


What about raising awareness?

We featured the application on our website, outlining the key areas of concern and sharing our response to the application in full.

We also shared information via social media and in our monthly e-newsletter.

Horse rider near the proposed site

The local action group

The campaign was set up by local residents who clearly knew what they were doing as they gathered the support of 2000+ local people on their Facebook page.


What happened?

As a result of a well-managed campaign, 1512 objections were registered on the Central Bedfordshire Council planning portal and in late July the application was withdrawn following an exchange of letters between the Case Officer and the Land Promoter. It is likely to re-appear at a later date so the campaign group will continue.


What the campaigners say

“I had never been involved in anything like this before and it was incredibly daunting. The support of the CPRE Bedfordshire generally made me feel as though I had expertise at my fingertips and a hand on my shoulder throughout. I can’t thank them enough.” Karina Bartlett, Say No to Greenwoods New Town campaign.

“Working with CPRE Bedfordshire on this and other local planning applications is a huge benefit to us.  Gravenhurst is a small parish with limited resources and the ability to seek advice and learn from the CPRE team is invaluable.” Alessandra Marabese, Clerk, Gravenhurst Parish Council.


We’ll keep standing up for the Bedfordshire countryside. Want to stand with us? Sign up now for monthly news on our work or join us as a member from just £3 a month.

Countryside near the proposed Greenwoods site
Quernmore landscape