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PRoPERty CPRE in call to protect English Green Belts

The Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) has urged the government to do more to protect Green Belt land as a newly-published briefing and map reveals major threats to such areas. Among issues facing Green

Belts are proposals for airport expansion, golf courses and new housing, which equates to an area larger than Slough over the next 20 years. Te publication of both Te

Green Belt Treats Map and the briefing comes aſter a gov- ernment pledge two years ago to “maintain protection of the Green Belt”. In July 2010, communities secre- tary Eric Pickles said regional planning was to be abolished to give local people more say and ensure greater preservation of Green Belts.

CPRE is urging more protection for Green Belt land around urban areas CPRE’s Paul Miner said: “Te Green Belt is

the most popular planning policy in England and the envy of the world.” Details:

Aberdeen gardens plans abandoned

Members of Aberdeen City Council (ACC) have voted to abandon the City Garden Project (CGP) in favour of “alternative proposals” for the city’s regeneration. Te Granite Web concept –

involving the raising of Union Terrace Gardens to street level – was rejected by 22 council- lors, with 20 voting in favour and one abstaining. Earlier this year, it was

announced Diller Scofidio and Renfro (New York, US) and Keppie Design with US landscape architects Olin Studio had been selected to design the CGP. The redevelopment of Union Terrace

Te Granite Web vision was chosen for Aberdeen’s City Garden Project

Gardens had been backed by more than 45,000 local residents in a referendum organised by ACC, but opposition to the plans remained. It was agreed, however, that plans forming part of a revised Tax Incremental Financing

(TIF) scheme to refurbish Aberdeen Art Gallery among others would be retained. Additional projects such as a revamp of the

Music Hall and Aberdeen Arts Centre are to be considered as part of the TIF scheme in con- sultation with the Scottish Futures Trust. Details:

£9m leisure development for Glasgow Fort complex

Work has started on the construction of a £9m leisure development at the Glasgow Fort Shopping Park on the eastern outskirts of Glasgow, Scotland. Te scheme will deliver a 45,000sq ſt (4,181sq m) extension housing a Vue-branded cinema


and five restaurants. Millar Construction UK has been appointed lead contractor. Glasgow Fort Shopping Park manager Phil

Goodman said: “We can look forward to a major extension to the park’s offering.” Details:

Twitter: @leisureopps

Post-Games benefits and opportunities

david kERR is principal of David Kerr Associates (DKA) – a member of the Leisure Property Forum


uring this Olympic ‘aſtermath’, it is a fitting time to reflect on what an unparalleled and unprecedented success the

Games were for the UK and all connected with the Olympic movement. Yet as a nation, we seem at a loss as to

how we can sustain this feel good factor so that we continue to reap the rewards, beyond the end of the Paralympic Games and through the next decade. Te harmony of the games created against a backdrop of fierce competition is an idea that society should embrace. Tere are many ways this could be done but here are some ideas: • The recognition of a healthier, happier

nation will lead to a reduction in medical bills and National Health Service costs. • Make subscriptions a level playing field

by removing VAT liability for all and, at the same time, allow active members – using a health club/gym at least four times a month – to offset subscription costs against tax. • Incentivise private schools at primary,

secondary level and universities to open up all of their sport facilities to the local com- munity on a supervised basis. • Provide media coverage of national

championships in all sports through spon- sorship or subscription. As a keen former oarsman, I would pay to watch national level rowing on TV or an online stream. • Take sport into schools through

external agencies who can provide the opportunity, equipment and training – irre- spective of budgets and staff constraints. • Develop a programme of sporting and

educational scholarships throughout the schools system. If external sponsorship is required, this should be encouraged as a charitable giſt. Any scholarship could be subject to a refund in the event of insuffi- cient commitment from the beneficiary. Rather like the volunteers helping at the

Olympics, just think how much pleasure we could all derive, give and indirectly benefit from by pursuing these opportunities. What we now need to do is to focus on

raising the funding for these initiatives within society, rather than just relying on support from central government.

Read Leisure Opportunities online: 15

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