With Mike Sanderson
The skies were leaden again. Rain teemed down. Again.
“See, it’s the climate changing!” said Tew. He was dashing, head down, and ran smack into the Bard. “That’s the trouble these days: everyone’s always rushing. Where has that timeless quality gone that you see in the pictures in the Tysoe oral history project? These qualities only flow from having a link to events and associations with other times,” muttered the Bard, emptying his wellies. “So what can we do about it?”
A mischievous wrinkled grin (much like a smiley) spread across Tew’s face. “Well, it’s simple really. We’ve known since there were only 3.6 billion people on the planet, that diversity makes our environment stable. This ’ere Neighbourhood Plan gives us our opportunity. We can designate things that are important to the village consciousness, that give us our diversity (the well-heads in the centre de ville, the allotments, playing fields, churches). We can also state that the design and form of buildings must have an alternative heating source to oil. Oh, I forgot, and be faced with local stone.”
“You’re suddenly very eloquent,” replied the Bard, with a frown. “But I agree. If we’d used our collective noggins, all those years back, then maybe we wouldn’t need an FSD! I know solar panels aren’t everyone’s cup of tea; but they could have made such a difference, long-term, if everyone had them. Even if some think it’s now too late, we should do our best to have a low-carbon future; and insulation, triple-glazing. In the long run it would help with people’s bills, too.”
And the moral of this tale? Well, unlike the NPPF ministerial foreword, which focuses on making our lives better, now: “we can be optimistic about providing our children with a way of life psychologically, intellectually and aesthetically more satisfying than our present one” (Ecologist, 1972).
– Originally published in the Tysoe & District Record (April 2014: no.743)