The Voice Of The People Of The Forest of Dean

Road and traffic to blame, not sheep

It was refreshing to read the letter from Larry Still in last week's edition of The Forester. Mr Still obviously understands the Forest of Dean and its traditions and brings a welcome dose of common sense to the issue of free roaming sheep.

For many years now the Foresters have had to live with massive increases in traffic thundering through the interior Statutory Forest and on roads that were not designed to take it. As Mr Still says it is the roads and associated traffic speed, and not sheep, that are the problem.

I doubt if the writer of a letter 'Name and address supplied' from someone who does not have the courage to publish his or her name, will be asking a sheep badger why he is going about his legal pursuit. If he does, the badger might tell him or her that no restraining order has been placed on the Commoners' Association or those commoning.

What is taking place is an unnecessary dispute between the Forest of Dean District Council and Forest Enterprise with the Commoners' Association as interested observers - and for which the council tax payers or income taxpayers will have lost a lot of money whoever wins or loses.

I am reminded of a letter that I read in the local press last year in which a lady complained about the trees. She said that they were a nuisance because the leaves were blocking her guttering. It seems that the lady had missed the point. We are privileged to live in the forest and the leaves come as part of the package.

Get rid of the trees. Get rid of the animals. Let's have a nice concrete and tarmac Dean with massive overhead steel walkways, plenty of ropes to swing on, mountain and motorbikes and 4X4s racing around everywhere and the traffic careering through oblivious to the safety of all and everything around.

This is not for Dean Forest Voice, nor do we expect for the majority of Foresters. We would rather see trees with the animals grazing safely and people enjoying and respecting the beauty all around them.

Keith Morgan, Broadwell - Dean Forest Voice.