Chairman's Blog

Living in a beautiful area like the New Forest does not come without problems, with various layers of government, quangos, and stake holders all wanting to play their part. HCC who are rolling out broad band in Hampshire have to consult and obtain agreement from several interested parties these principally being for us, The Verderers, The Forestry Commission, Natural England, the District Council and also the Parish Council.

The Verderers established by act of Parliament in 1877 are charged with, among other things, safeguarding a viable future for commoning i.e. depasturing livestock upon the Forest. They understandably jealously guard forest land from encroachment. There is a requirement for 96 cabinets to be put in the forest. At the time of writing some 48 have agreed locations. The Verderers are opposing the location of some of our green cabinets, which deliver high speed broad band, one in Beaulieu and two in Buckler’s Hard and this will cause delay.

An outcome discovered at a recent Parish Council meeting was ... do the Verderers have jurisdiction over the verges of the Beaulieu Estate? Has HCC spoken about this matter to the Beaulieu Estate? Member’s recollection was that when the cattle grids were installed around the forest, the gridding of Beaulieu was a consideration as whilst within the forest it is privately owned and could be gridded off. It was a personal decision of Lord Montagu not to grid. It is understood that HCC and Beaulieu Estate are now talking to one another and hopefully the Verderers involvement can be satisfactorily resolved and this further delay overcome.

The area occupied by a green cabinet is 1.54 square meters.