The annual National Parks Societies Conference was held in Snowdonia last week.
Recognising the present scale of the nature and climate emergency, the Friends of the New Forest proposed a resolution calling on governments in England and Wales to give Protected Landscapes (National Parks and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty) their full backing in legislation. This was unanimously agreed by all National Park Societies and Campaign for National Parks who signed the joint declaration below
Declaration from the National Parks Movement:
At a time of nature and climate emergency, we must retain and strengthen the laws and policies which protect the Protected Landscapes of Wales and England. This means there must be:
- No weakening, or removal, of vital European legislation such as the Habitats Regulations;
- Effective schemes of support for farmers and land managers which safeguard rural livelihoods, reinforce nature’s recovery, and promote public access; and
- A principle of safeguarding the additional planning protections which are crucial for Protected Landscapes.
We need to and will strongly support governments’ commitments to new purposes, duties and powers to ensure that Protected Landscapes can deliver more for nature, climate and people in future.
The statement was signed by the following organisations:
Campaign for National Parks, The Broads Society, Snowdonia Society,
Dartmoor Preservation Association, The Exmoor Society, Friends of Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, Friends of the Brecon Beacons, Friends of the Dales, Friends of the Lake District, Friends of the New Forest, Friends of the Peak District, Friends of the South Downs, North Yorkshire Moors Association
Delegates at the Conference (photo CNP)
This declaration will be used to engage with Parliamentarians and demand they do more to back National Parks and ensure their protection.
John Ward, Chairman of the Friends of the New Forest agreed with Dr Rose O’Neill, Chief Executive of the Campaign for National Parks that it was fantastic to see the National Parks movement in England and Wales come together to make a powerful, positive case for why these landscapes matter.
Unfortunately the signals we are getting from the UK Government in Westminster suggests they are heading in the wrong direction. Any government who is seen to be undermining these aspirations risks suffering a political price at the next election.
Just CLICK HERE to register your support for this Declaration