The Shropshire Hills AONB are supporting our fight. You can download a copy of their response to the consultation below.
The route along the Rea Valley and the Camlad Valleys runs immediately adjacent to the Shropshire Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Here is a quote from their website:
"Why do we need AONBs?
We assume that our countryside will always stay the same, but often this is not true. Perhaps the most vulnerable areas are not the wild, open, high places but the gentle, smaller-scale landscapes of England and Wales . These include hedgerows, spinneys and bluebell woods; heath, marsh and meadow. Under pressure for change, much of this traditional countryside has already vanished. AONB status protects the finest examples which remain. AONBs work - with due care for the rural way of life - to conserve the landscape's outstanding natural beauty and ensure its survival for future generations.
As a nation, we believe that the rich green image of our traditional countryside belongs to us all. In a sense, AONBs do belong to us all: the Government confers their status and our planning laws protect them. But the nation neither owns nor administers the land - some is owned by public bodies such as the Forestry Commission, or by conservation organisations such as the National Trust and County Wildlife Trusts. Other areas are owned by local authorities and government departments, like the Ministry of Defence. But much of the land within AONBs remains in the hands of the farmers and landowners who, over the generations, have shaped its rich and familiar patterns. Most AONBs continue to function as traditional, but well-farmed landscapes - it is accepted that the countryside is not a museum and supports a distinct and traditional rural way of life. "
We think that description includes our valley as much as it does the AONB itself and it is worth pointing out that if you stand on Bromlow Callow inside the AONB it would be possible to see almost the entire length of the proposed pylon route.
Shropshire Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty - Leader Area.
You can download a map of the AONB area and the AONB Leader Area on the links below. The Rea and Camlad valley corridor crosses the AONB Leader Area near Marton, Brockton, Worthen and Westbury. Here is a link to the Shropshire Hills AONB Leader Project and here is a quote from their website:
"The theme for the programme is improving the well-being of people in and around the Shropshire Hills by building on a sense of place and attachment to the landscape"
Putting a line of Pylons through the area would seem to be the complete antithesis of this statement.
European Landscape Convention
Here is one sentence from the convention:
"Acknowledging that the landscape is an important part of the quality of life for people everywhere: in urban areas and in the countryside, in degraded areas as well as in areas of high quality, in areas recognised as being of outstanding beauty as well as everyday areas;"
Natural England has been heavily involved with implementing theconvention and has defined the Shropshire Hills as one of the so-called Character Areas. Area number 65. See what they say here:http://www.naturalengland.org.uk/ourwork/landscape/englands/character/areas/shropshire_hills.aspx