Treasured public spaces across the UK are being sold off and lost to private interests at an alarming rate.

Reprinted here from a post by the Good Law Project

Greenfields Recreation Ground, in Shropshire, has been a resource to local families since 1926; generations of families have played in it. Throughout that time, the land has been held and managed as recreational land by the council on behalf of the community. But in 2017 it was sold off to a developer - for high-end housing. The community was not consulted and the sale was not advertised, despite there being a legal requirement to do so.

This is not an isolated example. Up and down the country we are seeing our public spaces disappear into private hands.

Locality, a campaign group fighting to save public spaces, estimates that nearly half of all public land in Britain has been sold off since the 1970s - and the capture for private profit of public goods shows no signs of slowing. Nearly 4,000 public spaces and buildings are being sold off every year in England alone.

The pandemic reminded us how important our public spaces are. They are where we come together, exercise, meet our neighbours, make new friends, walk our dogs - and put down roots in our communities.

The Supreme Court only takes appeals which raise points of ‘general public importance’. And you can read the legal grounds of the Greenfields Community’s appeal here. We want public land to be held for the public - and not to be sold out from under them without consultation. That’s why we are raising money: to protect the Greenfields site, and help the community that uses it, and so many others like it, protect their public spaces.

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