It’s hard to know what access to nature minister Richard Benyon normally finds in his gigantic Berkshire estate when he strolls out on a Sunday afternoon. It is unlikely, however, to be a loudly singing group of activist trespassers, dressed up as psychedelic animals and accompanied by an all-female morris-dancing troupe.
But that’s what wandered up his drive on Sunday, when protesters visited the Englefield estate, calling on Benyon to open it up to the public and extend access for everyone to green space across England.
The Guardian witnessed about 150 people strolling into the estate, including the morris dancers (who came in peace, leaving their traditional sticks at home), and Nadia Shaikh, a nature conservationist and one of the organisers of the event.
The right to roam, common land, power to the people etc etc. The thing I just love about this story is that the founding event is the Mass Trespass at Kinder Scout. The Kinder Scout where access is now limited by the National Trust in order to stop the place eroding away from an excess of visitors. Garrett Hardin was right, Marxian access simply does not work when demand is greater than capacity.