Basingstoke MP Maria Miller chaired her regular ‘Community Chat’, this time focused on the importance of a “Strong Natural Environment’.
Maria established Basingstoke Community Chats to bring together local residents in the Basingstoke Constituency, to hear from experts, support positive discussions on things that matter locally, and to understand how we can all play our part in helping support change. Anyone can sign up, come along to listen, and share their thoughts on positive change for the future of our community. Details of coming events are posted on Maria’s Facebook page @Maria4Basingstoke, on her website Maria Miller | MP for Basingstoke (maria4basingstoke.co.uk) with tickets booked in advance on Eventbrite.
At the event Maria welcomed panellists from Thames Water, The South East Rivers Trust, The Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust, The Campaign for the Protection of Rural England(CPRE) and the Hampshire Countryside Team.
Local residents who attended heard about water quality, the River Loddon, the Local plan, work being done to safeguard and improve our local environment, along with ways to volunteer for environmental projects.
Maria said after the event: “Protecting the environment is an important part of safeguarding the future of the planet for our children and our children’s children. That work starts here in our own community, with each of us playing our part. Throughout the ‘Chat’ residents made clear, now more than ever, they want to see priority given to environmental protection in every aspect of Basingstoke life. A strong message to every elected representative, particularly as Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council consider a new ‘Local Plan’ for our community.
“There are so many ways we can all make changes in our lives to reduce the impact we have on the environment, from the cars we drive, to the food we eat. There are opportunities to play a hands-on role, planting hedgerows to prevent soil erosion and flooding to volunteering to enhance and protect our Public Rights Of Way. Volunteering is a way in which we can all make a significant difference to our natural environment and improve our mental health.”
Maria Miller also emphasised. “ Basingstoke has played its part and has built many more new houses than other communities across the nation. We have played our part. Enough is enough. Other communities need to build the new homes they need rather than relying on Basingstoke. It is now time to push back and protect our community from over development with all of the catastrophic impacts that would have on our local natural environment.”
“Residents can actively take part in protection of our natural environment through volunteering and making their own submissions to the Local Plan when it is open to consultation in June”.