Permaculture Association 'Voices for Change' debate

The Land Is Ours office at
Wed Oct 10 11:14:12 BST 2001

The Permaculture Association 'Voices for Change' debate

"The future use of land in Britain" - Saturday 6th October, at Kingsley 
Hall, Bow, E.London

The future use of land in Britain is at stake.  How we act now will be 
looked upon by our children walking in the dew across the fields of these 
lands as a turning point for better or for worse.  These are critical days 
and we must act with one voice.

Most of us just want to get on with our own lives, moving towards 
sustainability, making ends meet and believing in the rightness of our 
visions and dreams.  But bigger wheels are turning that we can't 
ignore.  The foot and mouth experience is the last straw.  We can't afford 
to be at the sidelines of the debate about future land use.  Permaculture 
design offers solutions and examples that can help to move things 
forward.  But so far our voice as a network is largely unspoken and unheard.

A shift is taking place all over the land, from small pockets of 
permaculture activity towards a real wave of change.  Disparate groups, and 
networks are emerging as partners for change, all wanting to see positive 
and practical dialogue with Government, and willing to work together to 
achieve this.  If we are to meet the land crisis head on, which is but one 
issue amongst many, we must act together.

The Government has now announced a new Policy Commission on Farming & Food, 
which will advise on how the UK will achieve a sustainable rural economy 
and advance economic health and animal welfare reform.  The timescales of 
this commission are alarmingly short, with a draft report timetabled for 
the end of December.  If we are to act we must do so quickly.

We cannot let the interests of large corporations and landowners continue 
to dominate land use.  We need fresh thinking.  As Mark Fisher found in his 
review of government farming policy and initiatives, there are some 
positive developments, and organisations like the National Trust are 
promoting integrating farming systems and whole farm design.  We need to 
support the positive, and also make our own unique contribution.  Deciding 
the future use of land affects us and so must include us all.

Voices for Change after the AGM this year in London on October 6th at 
Kingsley Hall was not just another fringe debate - it's part of a larger 
process that begins by us opening the doors for an inclusive dialogue to 
shape and build a Permaculture Britain.

Written by Jonathan Evelight

The Land Is Ours
... A Landrights Movement for All

The Land Is Ours campaigns peacefully for access to the land, its resources 
and the decision making processes affecting them, for everyone - 
irrespecitive of race, age, or gender.

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