An update on the ‘Save the Ranges’ campaign

By Tim Jones

You may have seen news about the Save the Ranges campaign in a previous special edition of The Parishioner. We reached out to the team for an update, and here is the latest news:

Back in May, we were copied on a letter from Michael Gove, Jeremy Hunt & Jonathan Lord (our local MPs) to Jeremy Quin (The Minister of State for Defence Procurement) and to our surprise, the letter suggested that the MPs totally understood our position and were also questioning the validity of the reasons the DIO had provided for closing the ranges. However, the good feeling was short lived as nothing happened before the parliamentary recess and despite follow up emails from the campaigners there’s been no further response from any of the MPs nor Jeremy Quin.

Not to be disheartened, we took our campaign to the national press in July. Beginning with an article in the Guardian & Observer, which empathised with the local people about what has been taken away from them. Off the back of that article, we were contacted by BBC South Today who wanted a segment for their evening news. This aired on August 5th and featured interviews with people involved with the campaign as well as an excellent soundbite from Neil Lambert, barely able to contain his frustration about the issue and how it’s been handled by the politicians. There has since been further press coverage of the issue via BBC Radio Surrey and Private Eye magazine.

Thanks to the press coverage, we received sufficient donations to be able to start the legal proceeding to get a clearer view on the legality of the closure. Many thanks to those who have donated. Any unused funds collected will be donated to the charity : Help for Heroes

Tim Jones –