Our current analysis suggests that we can’t write plain English

An excellent post from Charles Rangeley-Wilson on the difficulties of understanding the current consultation documents about river management in the UK

One of the main aims of the recent WWF chalk-streams conference (my presentation is published in a previous blog entry) was to encourage people to comment on the Environment Agency’s latest River Basin Management Plans.

If you love rivers, this is important (if dry) stuff. These plans will define what the government will do over the next few years to improve our rivers. The public needs to say what it thinks in order to hold the government and its agencies to task.

In the afternoon we broke up into sub-groups and tried to make sense of the catchment summaries. I was given the Environment Agency’s summary for north-west Norfolk, where I live. I couldn’t really make head or tail of it to be honest. But it was hard to concentrate, we were trying to read and discuss at the same time. Sure, there was the standard windy drift of vague statements that…

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One Response to Our current analysis suggests that we can’t write plain English

  1. EdRollason says:

    I don’t know if you have ever had the pleasure of perusing the EA’s style guide “Writing for the Environment Agency” – it explains a lot: http://blog.writerscopywriting.com/assets/EAguidelines.pdf

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