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Forest sale plans felled

Posted 18 February 2011
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Forest sale plans felled
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Those who love to put on their equestrian clothing and ride in England's forests can stop worrying about the possible loss of public access after the government announced the abandonment of plans to sell them off.

Environment secretary Caroline Spelman told the House of Commons the forestry aspect of the Public Bodies Bill were being removed and said she recognised the high level of public concern over the issue, even apologising for the proposal.

She stated: "If there is one clear message from this experience, it is that people cherish their forests and woodlands and the benefits they bring."

Ms Spelman revealed plans to set up a panel to consider the future of forestry policy in Britain, which will involve various bodies concerned with leisure, conservation and the forestry industry itself.

This may produce future benefits for those who ride, walk or cycle in such areas.

A protest rally planned in the Lake District's Whinlatter Forest by pressure group Save Lakeland's Forests will now be a celebration event.