MP David Lidington discusses the jewels of our local area

Mr Lidinton penned a letter to the Bucks Herald with his thoughts on the future of the Chilterns.

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 9th May 2018, 9:08 am
Updated Thursday, 7th June 2018, 7:59 pm
MP David Lidington
MP David Lidington

I've spent some of my constituency time recently catching up on the latest news about two of the jewels of our local area.

The Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty probably has more people living on its doorstep than any other protected landscape in Europe. Its official guardian is the Chilterns Conservation Board.

The Chilterns AONB straddles Oxfordshire, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire as well as Bucks, and covers many different local authorities.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The Conservation Board’s Chief Officer, Sue Holden, explained to me that she and her colleagues trying to think about the future of the Chilterns as a whole.

With population growth and new housing in London and all the Chiltern counties, it'll be more important than ever to look after the “green lung” provided by the AONB.

That means ensuring that people can have access for recreation (few new homes these days have large gardens) while at the same time giving proper priority to conservation and the need for tranquility.

I was pleased to see that the CCB has developed good ideas like Chilterns vineyard and brewery trails. I've suggested adding a political trail in too!

There's Disraeli’s house at Hughenden, his father’s home in Bradenham, and connections with Hampden, Wilkes and Burke, not to mention Chequers.

My second jewel is the Bucks County Museum in the heart of Aylesbury Old Town. It's a treasure trove: literally so because they have Anglo-Saxon coins from the Lenborough Hoard.

There are objects that recall the industries that used to be the mainstay of the local economy- from lace to wood to printing to the famous Aylesbury ducks!

Upstairs, we have a small art gallery which shows local paintings and hosts first class visiting exhibitions. Fans of Terry Pratchett’s Discworld should head there now for the new show ofillustrations from the books.

Our museum is also changing. It was exciting to hear the new Director, Sue Shave, explain her plans to revamp the older galleries and encourage more local people to explore this amazing place.