Blair to name landowner as rural chief

03 March 1999

Blair to name landowner as rural chief

TONY BLAIR is set to enrage ramblers and his own backbenchers party by appointing a big landowner as the governments new countryside chief.

Ewen Cameron will be a controversial choice because he has a record of opposition to the right to roam, a manifesto commitment of the government.

Mr Cameron is a Somerset farmer and a former president of the Country Landowners Association.

More than 45 Labour MPs have signed a Commons motion claiming Mr Cameron planted potatoes across a public footpath on his Somerset farm.

His appointment is also likely to meet objections from Michael Meacher, the environment minister, who will reveal right-to-roam legislation next week.

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