National Park Extensions – Consultation Ending

by David Murray on 16 March 2012

in Cumbria, Lake District NP, National Parks, Opinion, Westmorland, Yorkshire Dales NP

I spent this morning away from the usual Friday morning work on my web sites to put the finishing touches to a submission to the Secretary of State for the Environment and send it off by email. Today is the final day to say whether you approve or disapprove of the proposed enlargement of the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales national Parks.

In very short summary, I disapprove.

In slightly longer summary I have three main points:

  • I am not opposed to extension of the two parks per se. Over the past sixty years they have done a lot of good things and are to be encouraged. However, I have significant reservations about the present proposals.
  • No extensions should take place unless and until the national park authorities are placed under far greater accountability for promoting the economic well-being of the local populace to balance up their current obligations relative to environment and conservation.
  • If, however, the extensions do go ahead what remains of the integrity of the historic county of Westmorland should be maintained by ensuring that all Westmorland areas fall within the Lake District National Park and do not end up being controlled from the other side of the Pennines.

In case anyone is interested I’ve put a pdf file of my (short, only two sides) submission up for download at:
National Parks Extensions – Submission March 2012

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