People power: Long Lands Common appeal hit new total of £340,000 thanks to Harrogate public

With less than a week until the share sales deadline, the Long Lands Common appeal is tantalisingly close to realising its revised target of £375,000 to create Harrogate's first-ever community-owned woodland.

Monday, 14th December 2020, 9:48 am

The volunteers had already hit their initial target of £300,000 but have raised it even higher in order to get on with the work of bringing infrastructure to the site between Harrogate and Knaresborough necessary to make it accessible to the public - as well as planting the trees on the 30 acres of greenbelt land near Nidd Gorge.

As the shares deadline looms this Sunday, December 20, the Long Lands Common team are reporting the latest figure raised as £340,450.

Long Lands Common - The dream of creating Harrogate's first community-owned woodland is close to becoming a reality following a phenomenal response from the people of Harrogate & Knaresborough,

Irrespective of what the final total will be, progress is already ongoing with plans in place for an open day next spring when people will be able to visit the site for the first time and view the plans for the new woodland.

The Long Lands Common volunteers are now moving towards the completion of the purchase of the land.

They have already held a meeting to discuss the design process for the site, once they take ownership of the land, and are able to begin the transformation work in the new year.

The process includes opportunities for shareholders to get involved with the design process and submit views on various ideas and plans for the project, before a final plan is decided.

This flurry of activity follows the launch of the project by Nidd Gorge Community Action group earlier this year to raise the money to buy two large fields next to Nidderdale Greenway to create a woodland nature reserve on land that was recently threatened by the rejected Inner Northern Relief Road.

The dream of creating Harrogate's first community-owned woodland is now close to becoming a reality following a phenomenal response from the people of Harrogate & Knaresborough, and beyond, who have supported the project in their thousands by buying community shares in Long Lands Common Ltd – a Community Benefit Society established this year to manage the land as a wildlife haven and public green space, owned and controlled by the community.

All further share sales sold from the latest appeal will be used to fund the infrastructure projects that will be needed to transform the farmland into a publicly accessible green space as quickly as possible – particularly the construction of an access ramp and new entrance to the site from the Nidderdale Greenway, footpaths, ponds and a compost toilet.

Anybody still wanting to become a shareholder in this ground-breaking community project and help towards the new target can buy shares online at www.longlandscommon.org or phone 01423 560283 to request a paper application form.

Shares cost £1 each and the minimum investment is £50, which buys a lifetime membership and shareholding that you can pass on to future generations to help protect our greenbelt long into the future.

Shares can be bought as gifts for friends and family. Shareholders must be over 16. Organisations can also become shareholders providing they are incorporated.

The share sale will definitely close on December 20th 2020.

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