Updated: Feb 13
According to ILiveHere.co.uk the population of Loxwood as a whole is older than the national average. It’s also older than the West Sussex average, so ensuring our older community was aware of the potential threat to the Loxwood woodland was top of mind for the first awareness campaign from volunteer community action group StopTheClayPit.org.
To ensure we made as many of the community aware that they could be affected by the loss of woodland, increase of HGV traffic on the roads and potential pollution threats, the campaign group decided to create an old school leaflet drop. This also gave the volunteers a chance to share the news with many members of the community who hadn’t seen the August webinar from ProTreat or were unable to join it as they don’t have access to the internet.
A survey published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) shows 5.3m Britons have either never gone online or not used the internet in the last three months. This amounted to 10 per cent of the UK population in 2018, when the survey was conducted. We wanted to ensure that awareness was raised to those older community members who aren’t silver surfers.
Keeping aware of social distancing due to Covid, one sunny weekend in September, over 1500 printed leaflets were hand-delivered to the local community by the volunteer team. We took to foot, bikes and horses to reach as many local homes as possible.
As a result, we’ve been delighted to welcome many new members, including 86 year old Pat who said “ I walk the woods every day with my dog, we’re a bit slower than we used to be, but I love every moment and want to do whatever I can to help”. Mary, 80, another local resident said “I’ve been enjoying the wildlife in the woodland for over 25 years, I especially love the primroses and bluebells in the spring. We can’t let this proposal go ahead”
We’ll use digital channels to continue to share insight and news about the proposal, but the StopTheClayPit.org team are dedicated to keeping those not online in the loop too.
Want to get involved? Sign the petition on Change.org. Email the volunteer team firstname.lastname@example.org, follow like and share our posts on social and be ready to protest if a planning application appears.