We read with concern and also disbelief that Mornington Road Car Park is being considered for "disposal for development" in the IW Council parking strategy (CP, 26-02-21)

Mornington Wood is situated above the car park with the Green below, and above Queen's Road, Cowes and the Solent.

It was designated as a village green on July 17, 2000, and has been used by the community of Cowes for many years with views towards the Solent across the car park.

Access to Mornington Wood is obtained via the car park entrance and from the Green across the car park and therefore there is a public right of way.

Mornington Wood is a public amenity with pathways through it and seats in it to enjoy the views and peace and quiet of the green space.

Read more: Here's how the County Press reported the planning strategy announcement

A very important asset for people's health and mental well being.

Any development of Mornington Road car park would destroy this amenity and potentially block the rights of way.

Mornington Wood has been maintained by the Mornington Wood Volunteer Group for over ten years and although owned by the IW Council, the volunteers have received no financial support from it but have been well supported by Cowes Town Council in the provision of a tool shed, tools, maintenance of tools, insurance and funding for path maintenance, purchase of seats, wild bluebells and daffodils and pond plants.

It has also been funded by a local benefactor, for which the volunteers have been very grateful.

It is very much loved by many people, including children who enjoy seeing the wildlife including red squirrels. People sit on the benches enjoying the views.

During the Covid pandemic, the volunteers have continued to maintain the wood and car park, carrying out weekly litter picks, cutting grass edges and pruning overgrown areas.

In our opinion, the only way forward for Mornington Road Car Park is as a car park.

Any "development" would impinge on a Village Green much enjoyed and used by many members of the community.

The volunteer group would be happy to continue its maintenance if the IW Council is wishing to "dispose" of the car park.

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