How much lost?

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I read with interest your pieces (Herald, February 7) entitled Concern over development across area, and Car dealership plans opposed.

We hear more and more calls for increased food production in this country together with increased concern over food and fuel security, and yet we continue to squander our agricultural land unabated.

I have just re-read an interesting short report on agriculture of West Sussex by William Lawson, director of agriculture for West Sussex in the late 1930s in which he says: “The land available for agriculture has diminished owing to the rapid expansion of built-up areas, residences, land taken for sport and games and other non-agricultural purposes.

“Over a period of years, the average loss of land to agriculture has been about 1,500 acres per annum, and between 1935 and 1936 the loss was over 3,000 acres p/a.”

Much of this loss has taken place on our most fertile soils.

Food for thought indeed.

I wonder just how much of this precious and irreplaceable resource we have lost since this report.

Peter Dyer

Winter Street

Ashington