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Remember how the Rotherwas Ribbon had a road built over it thanks to the pressure from quango, Advantage West Midlands plus the reluctance of English Heritage to schedule it? You’d think that was the end of it and that things couldn’t get worse for this world-unique monument, yet they just have. Chancellor George Osborne has just announced that the Rotherwas Business Park has been granted Business Enterprise Status.
There are a couple of stunning Ribbon related facts about that: Firstly, it seems that one of the key reasons that Enterprise Status has been granted was “the benefits of the new direct road link to the A49 from Rotherwas” – and that’s the very road that was driven (without good economic reason said the Government Inspector at the time) over the Ribbon! Secondly, the rest of the Ribbon (still not scheduled! EH said it would “take some time” to decide and that was years ago) curves several hundred yards towards (and actually into) the Business Park – which, as an enterprise zone, will be expanded onto the land surrounding it using “lower levels of planning control”. So one must wonder: is the Ribbon “in the way” again and if so what will happen to it?
Because the Ribbon wasn’t scheduled at the time, a road was built over it.
Because the road has been built, enterprise zone status has been conferred.
Because enterprise zone status has been conferred the rest of the Ribbon might now be under threat.
Pretty awful, is it not, for a monument that the County Archaeologist said was comparable in importance to Stonehenge before he suddenly desisted? We could perhaps start a petition calling for it to be scheduled… but somehow that doesn’t seem likely to happen now.
Or ever, don’t you agree?