We believe a beautiful, thriving countryside is important for everyone, no matter where they live. Millions of town and city dwellers recharge their batteries with a walk or a bike ride in the local Green Belt, spend weekends and holidays in our National Parks, or enjoy fresh local produce. People who live in rural areas keep our countryside beautiful and productive.
The countryside is unique, essential, precious and finite – and it’s in danger. Every year, a little more is lost forever to urban sprawl, new roads, housing and other developments. Rural shops and services are closing, and increasingly intensive farming is changing the character of the countryside. Climate change, too, will have serious impacts on the rural environment.
Unlike many environmental charities, CPRE has no vested interests – we own no land, rely solely on donations and grants, and are politically independent. We make decisions with the head not the heart, as much as we love the countryside, and we are possibly the only green group which has a completely holistic approach. Planning, in particular, is all about looking at the bigger picture, and our wide remit means we have to consider the whole of the country – rural and urban – when creating policy.
CPRE Hertfordshire is the county branch of the Campaign to Protect Rural England. Founded in 1928, we are a separate registered charity. Our small number of part-time staff and army of volunteers celebrate and protect Hertfordshire's countryside for all to enjoy.
[Download our AGM 2014 Minutes at the end of this article]
Our Annual General Meeting was held in October in the Aisled Barn at the Henry Moore Foundation in Perry Green, by kind invitation.
Heath Mount School in Watton-at-Stone was the setting for our Annual General Meeting, held slightly later than usual in October, to fit in with the school Half Term. We were there at the kind invitation of Ralph and Alexandra Abel Smith.