The British government’s highly ill-conceived plan to sell off the public woods and forests managed by the Forestry Commission in England ignited a grassroots bush fire of protests in communities across the country, with more than half a million people signing the ‘Save Our Forests’ petition.

Then, when its own backbench MPs sided with the protesters, voting against the proposals in a parliamentary debate, the coalition government had to admit defeat and abandon the sell-off, which means (for the moment) the proposals have been stalled. Indeed, a red-faced Prime Minister found himself announcing ...


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