Over the last few months I have been delighted by the engagement of the photographic community on the campaign to save the Chesterton site from ruin by the building of 3,000 houses in its eye-shot.
Other than the words of encouragement, support and of course the call to action to sign the e-petition many people have contacted me directly or asked when face to face for more information regarding this proposal.
It is true that the actual windmill itself is not under threat directly. It is after all a Grade 1 listed building that has stood proudly for 350 years overlooking the South Warwickshire countryside. However, the site being proposed by Stratford District Council is within clear eye-shot of the views from Chesterton Windmill and therefore represents a scar in the landscape. The windmill and the surrounding landscape are intrinsically linked.
As a passionate landscape photographer and someone who cares about our planet, its resources and delicately balanced eco-system I believe that this proposal not only threatens the natural biological sustainability of this area but will cause untold damage to the environment with the concentration of 3,000 houses in this green belt rural location.
Photography aside, this is a location that thousands of people visit every year to enjoy, reflect, relax and, yes photograph. I agree we need more housing in this country, I also believe that the housing needs to be affordable for first time buyers and young families and built in areas where there are jobs and an infrastructure to support such communities.
Building a 'New Town' in rural South Warwickshire where there are not local jobs or an infrastructure in place to handle the increased traffic or demand on services and that will have detrimental impact on the countryside and local area is just plain crazy. There are plenty of alternative options including brownfield sites and dispersal of the houses needed shared over wider areas of the county.
My priority is not the politics of the council and developers or the even the local community who understandably are opposed to the development - My priority is about the preservation of precious spaces of green field land that we all enjoy and protection of the delicately balanced environment that we rely on for us and our children to grow up around.
Given that I have been asked on many occasions the what, why, when, etc questions - I have created a sub page on my site to direct people to for more information.
I hope you will support the campaign, sign the e-petition to get 100,000 signatures and encourage everyone you know who cares about these issues to do the same before we loose yet another precious location.
New web page: http://www.alanranger.com/savechesterton