National Parks welcome latest Government announcement

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Published Thursday 6 March 2014

National Parks England [1] has today warmly welcomed the news that the Government will exempt National Parks from its latest proposals for extending permitted development rights.

The news was announced by Planning Minister, Nick Boles MP, today in a written ministerial statement to the House of Commons and comes on the day the Minister visits the New Forest National Park.

The Government is proposing that elsewhere permitted development rights be extended which would allow owners of barns and other agricultural buildings to construct up to three new dwellings in their place, without the need for planning permission. National Parks England and a range of other organisations had expressed concerns over the impact this would have on national park landscapes; on rural economies; and on the ability of National Park Authorities to facilitate new affordable housing for local people.   

Chair of National Parks England and the North York Moors National Park Authority, Jim Bailey, said: 'We’re delighted that the Government has decided to uphold long established protection for National Parks by exempting them from these latest plans.  Our National Parks represent some of our most stunning countryside.  The fact that they are also living working landscapes has never been in doubt.  What we need now is a serious discussion about how we can deliver well designed affordable housing for local needs.  That requires investment, partnerships, and yes good planning too.'

Jim Bailey added: 'Planning can help us deliver economic growth at the same time as maintaining the high quality landscapes valued by all. Ensuring National Park Authorities can continue to exercise sensitivity and careful judgement is critical to this and we welcome that the Government has listened to our concerns.'

New Forest National Park Authority Chairman Julian Johnson said: ‘We are pleased that the New Forest has been at the forefront of the discussion about permitted development rights. A number of Forest organisations, including ourselves, made representations to Government about the proposals - as did all 10 national parks represented by the umbrella organisation National Parks England - and we are pleased that today our on-going commitment to securing a living, working Forest for the benefit of the economy and local communities has been recognised.’


Notes to Editors:

National Parks England is the umbrella organisation that brings together the nine National Park  
Authorities (NPAs) and the Broads Authority.  It exists to support policy and practice by providing a collective voice for the views of the English NPAs; raising the profile of their work; facilitating discussion on issues of common concern; and working in partnership with other bodies. 

For more information see:


Twitter: @natparksengland 

Media Contacts:

Paul Hamblin – Director, National Parks England  

(w) 020 7072 7421      

(m) 07968 760 854

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