Sir Andrew Motion Backs National Parks Extensions
Tuesday, 04 September 2012 11:42

Former Poet Laureate Sir Andrew Motion visited Cumbria today (4 September) to see the proposed extension areas to the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales National Parks.

andrew-motion-visit with richard-pearse-looking-across-the-lune-valley-at-wind-farm-threatsThe poet, novelist and biographer is visiting the Barbon, Middleton and Leck Fells (north of Kirkby Lonsdale and south of Sedbergh) and Lune valley area as the guest of landscape charity Friends of the Lake District, who are campaigning to increase the protection for this beautiful area.

Sir Andrew Motion is visiting as president of the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE), key supporters of the park extension campaign proposals, and to support Friends of the Lake District, who represent CPRE in Cumbria.

Friends of the Lake District, and the key supporters group backing the National Park extensions including CPRE, the Campaign for National Parks, Cumbria Tourism and many other organisations and individuals, look forward to the imminent announcement from the Government to hold a public inquiry to progress the extension proposals.

Sir Andrew said: ‘The Lake District and Yorkshire Dales National Parks are undoubtedly national treasures. The beauty and value of the proposed areas to come into these two National Parks is equally unquestionable. By designating these areas within the National Parks we can ensure that the landscapes that we have come to recognise and enjoy can also be protected for future generations.'

Earlier this year a public consultation into the extensions plans generated over 3,000 responses of which 85% supported the proposals, representing both local people's views and those from across the whole country.

Friends of the Lake District Policy Officer Jack Ellerby said: ‘Cumbria's economy is dependent upon its beautiful landscapes - so extending the National Parks is a good news story for the local economy, jobs and future management of the landscape.'

Sir Andrew walked in the Barbon, Middleton and Leck Fells and River Lune valley area and believes it represents some of the finest unprotected landscape in the country. He saw how the area is under threat from adjacent wind farms and inappropriately sited transmission pylons. National Park status will be the stimulus for investment in the farmers who are responsible for managing the landscape.

Following his visit Sir Andrew went on to Grasmere to give poetry readings supported by the Wordsworth Trust and to promote his new book Silver: Return to Treasure Island.



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