Rescue Says

Opinion pieces – tell us what matters to you about heritage.

Rescue says: it’s not only the Stonehenge decision that should worry us all

Rescue is dismayed to see how arguments surrounding the Stonehenge tunnel seem to have degenerated into a slanging match between archaeologists. How could this have happened? The argument should be focused on a decision that impacts severely on the surroundings of one of our most important monuments, not about the how, what or who of …

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Rescue Says: A303 Stonehenge DCO granted – A sad day for our archaeological heritage

On 12 November 2020 Transport Secretary Grant Shapps granted a Development Consent Order for the Stonehenge Expressway and Tunnel scheme across the World Heritage Site (WHS). His decision flies in the face of the Examining Authority’s (ExA) recommendation for refusal. The five Planning Inspectors found that“The effect of the Proposed Development on the OUV of …

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Rescue Says: a government fixated on simplification of planning law is not good for our future environment

The government has produced a White Paper for England on planning “Planning for the Future August 2020” from the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government (MHCLG) which can be downloaded from https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/planning-for-the-future and is open for consultation until 29 October. The core proposals, which relate to local plans, ways of managing the planning system …

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Rescue says: Stonehenge scheme decision delayed again, surely time to give up?

The Transport Secretary has delayed his decision on the A303 Stonehenge Scheme until 13 November to seek the views of interested parties on the major new find around Durrington Walls.   Highways England’s immediate response was as follows: “This find is in the north east corner of the World Heritage Site, well outside the scheme …

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Rescue Says: Build, Build, Build – but what about the consequences?

Boris Johnson has today announced a range of proposed measures aimed at shocking the British Economy back into life following the COVID-19 crisis and Brexit uncertainty. These include a repeated commitment to reform the planning system. Amongst specific measures mentioned in the official press release (https://www.gov.uk/government/news/pm-build-build-build) are previously-announced proposals to extend permitted development rights and …

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Rescue says: Coronavirus – What about the archaeology?

Public health and personal safety are paramount: Archaeological site work should not be continuing whilst the current national coronavirus protection measures are in place. It is not an essential service and the travel involved is not necessary. As at late March 2020 Government guidance says one should only go to work outside one’s home if …

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Rescue says: A303 Stonehenge tunnel not yet a certainty

Yesterday’s Budget appeared to signal the final nail in the coffin for groups protesting the A303  proposals at Stonehenge –  but contrary to what the Chancellor appeared to say, a green light hasn’t suddenly been switched on for the A303 tunnel, just a continued commitment (since 2014) of HMG to “get it done” and that …

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Rescue says: Government announcement on local lists

On the 23rd October 2019, the government announced new measures to be undertaken as part of what the Communities, Housing and Local Government  Secretary  of State, Robert Jenrick MP, called the “most ambitious heritage preservation campaign for 40 years”. He said that with the historic environment singled out as a “key function of the planning system” the government …

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RESCUE statement on Brexit

RESCUE Members will no doubt be unsurprised to learn that there are zero provisions made for heritage, archaeology or the historic environment in general, within the terms of the UK’s EU Withdrawal Agreement. This may not be as unsurprising as you might think however, as few, if any, of the major international structures that underpin …

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