National park seeks government clarity on planning

Written by: Jez Abbott
Published on: 14 Sep 2015

Chris FranceA planning team is looking to talk with government officials on the future shape and role of national parks.

North York Moors National Park Authority director of planning Chris France pictured) told Planning: “We want to engage with government to get more clarity on its position on national parks.

“We are not getting a strong vision from ministers on how parks – which total about 10 per cent of land in England – fit into its agenda and where national parks should belong policy wise in 10 to 15 years.

“The government position on issues such as mass housing and fracking on national parks is not clear while it seems to be backing away from renewable energy. 

“More clarity will enable us develop a policy framework for the next decade and beyond and help my team draw up a blue print for future development.”

The authority is seeking to recruit a head of strategic policy to take a lead role in contributing to the national debate on protected landscapes, said France.

“This is a high-level post and the person will need considerable experience and expertise to balance strategic skills with a clear view of the practical outcomes of policy work.”

France manages a team of 20 planning staff, which receives around 700 to 800 planning applications a year.

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