MP Farron secures parliamentary debate in bid for more national park democracy

The Westmorland Gazette: MP Farron secures parliamentary debate in bid for more national park democracy MP Farron secures parliamentary debate in bid for more national park democracy

A CUMBRIAN MP's campaign for more democratic national park authorities has prompted a parliamentary debate.

Westmorland and Lonsdale MP Tim Farron secured the Westminster Hall debate next Wednesday (November 28) as part of his bid to bring about direct elections  to national park authority boards across the UK.

Mr Farron wants elected representatives to ensure they are accountable for the decisions they make, and prevent them riding roughshod over the opinions and priorities of local people.

Controversial decisions taken by the Lake District National Park Authority (LDNPA) over The Glebe at Bowness and its Brockhole site, both on the shore of Windermere, have particularly highlighted local concerns. At Brockhole, visitors and environmental campaigners were left in tears after the LDNPA went ahead with the felling of a landmark 110-year-old monkey puzzle tree against vociferous public opposition. Other plans for the national park centre - including a wedding and performance venues and watersports centre - have also been opposed.

Mr Farron said the debate would enable him to put his case for democratic accountability to the Government.

 “I am delighted to have secured this debate, and we can now take a step towards giving local people a formal say over the management of national parks," said Mr Farron.

"I hope Defra ministers will agree that the huge significance of the national park to the lives and communities of people in South Lakes means they deserve a say in how it is run.

“It will be a fantastic chance to raise my concerns about the recent controversies over the plans for Brockhole, and these will provide an important reference point in the debate as I seek to ensure local people’s voices are heard when it comes to the national park.”

Comments (19)

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5:19pm Fri 23 Nov 12

craggy says...

Here he goes again! Keeps his mouth well and truly shut during any controversy and then jumps on the bandwagon afterwards when he is safe from declaring where he stands.
When will people see through his tactics?
Here he goes again! Keeps his mouth well and truly shut during any controversy and then jumps on the bandwagon afterwards when he is safe from declaring where he stands. When will people see through his tactics? craggy

6:02pm Fri 23 Nov 12

Stick in the Mud says...

How much more local representation does he want?
22 members:
12 are appointed by Cumbria County Council and District Councils in National Park, e.g SLDC.
10 appointed by Secretary of Sate to represent national interest.
Therefore a MAJORITY of members are LOCAL representatives on what is a board that looks after a nationally, nay internationally, regarded area.
This is a benchmark for local representation.
If this is the best use of parliamentary time you have got to wonder what is going on down there and question who is pulling our MP's strings.
He's been worked up into a lather about a Monkey Puzzle Tree and an alternative to overpriced private sector wedding venues. Is this why I voted for him? He needs to concentrate on what the majority of his constituents want, not a few vested interests.
How much more local representation does he want? 22 members: 12 are appointed by Cumbria County Council and District Councils in National Park, e.g SLDC. 10 appointed by Secretary of Sate to represent national interest. Therefore a MAJORITY of members are LOCAL representatives on what is a board that looks after a nationally, nay internationally, regarded area. This is a benchmark for local representation. If this is the best use of parliamentary time you have got to wonder what is going on down there and question who is pulling our MP's strings. He's been worked up into a lather about a Monkey Puzzle Tree and an alternative to overpriced private sector wedding venues. Is this why I voted for him? He needs to concentrate on what the majority of his constituents want, not a few vested interests. Stick in the Mud

8:18pm Fri 23 Nov 12

Simon Butterworth says...

Stick in the Mud wrote:
How much more local representation does he want?
22 members:
12 are appointed by Cumbria County Council and District Councils in National Park, e.g SLDC.
10 appointed by Secretary of Sate to represent national interest.
Therefore a MAJORITY of members are LOCAL representatives on what is a board that looks after a nationally, nay internationally, regarded area.
This is a benchmark for local representation.
If this is the best use of parliamentary time you have got to wonder what is going on down there and question who is pulling our MP's strings.
He's been worked up into a lather about a Monkey Puzzle Tree and an alternative to overpriced private sector wedding venues. Is this why I voted for him? He needs to concentrate on what the majority of his constituents want, not a few vested interests.
Stick in the Mud is arguing for sham democracy. The key word here is appointed which removes accountability from an electorate. Those of us fortunate enough to live in the Lake District are cursed with four layers of local government who are incapable of working in any form of partnership. The LDNPA operates in a democratic deficit with the officers blaming the members and vice versa. The only way forward is true accountability to an electorate.
[quote][p][bold]Stick in the Mud[/bold] wrote: How much more local representation does he want? 22 members: 12 are appointed by Cumbria County Council and District Councils in National Park, e.g SLDC. 10 appointed by Secretary of Sate to represent national interest. Therefore a MAJORITY of members are LOCAL representatives on what is a board that looks after a nationally, nay internationally, regarded area. This is a benchmark for local representation. If this is the best use of parliamentary time you have got to wonder what is going on down there and question who is pulling our MP's strings. He's been worked up into a lather about a Monkey Puzzle Tree and an alternative to overpriced private sector wedding venues. Is this why I voted for him? He needs to concentrate on what the majority of his constituents want, not a few vested interests.[/p][/quote]Stick in the Mud is arguing for sham democracy. The key word here is appointed which removes accountability from an electorate. Those of us fortunate enough to live in the Lake District are cursed with four layers of local government who are incapable of working in any form of partnership. The LDNPA operates in a democratic deficit with the officers blaming the members and vice versa. The only way forward is true accountability to an electorate. Simon Butterworth

10:25pm Fri 23 Nov 12

Stick in the Mud says...

SB, Your ELECTED representatives 'appoint' the majority of members. A skim through a few of the 'members' turned up a couple of councillors , and most of the 'members' I looked at lived in the area. You, like everyone, just want 'local' people who agree with you. Get over it. Get on to your councillor if you are not happy and vote them off the council if they don't do anything about it.
It's a 'National' Park, deemed important to the country as a whole with taxpayers from all over UK paying for, and having an interest in the place, who might argue they should have the majority of representation. It's a special place and a special case.
Which members do you want to remove and who do you want to replace them with?
SB, Your ELECTED representatives 'appoint' the majority of members. A skim through a few of the 'members' turned up a couple of councillors [LD's even!!], and most of the 'members' I looked at lived in the area. You, like everyone, just want 'local' people who agree with you. Get over it. Get on to your councillor if you are not happy and vote them off the council if they don't do anything about it. It's a 'National' Park, deemed important to the country as a whole with taxpayers from all over UK paying for, and having an interest in the place, who might argue they should have the majority of representation. It's a special place and a special case. Which members do you want to remove and who do you want to replace them with? Stick in the Mud

10:41pm Fri 23 Nov 12

Stick in the Mud says...

SB, Breaking News.....
It all seems to be in hand:
http://www.lakedistr
ict.gov.uk/aboutus/g
overnancereview
Interesting links at the bottom.

What balance of directly elected local representation to national representation do you want, and with your desire for true democracy do you agree the rest of the country should be able to directly elect their 'members', and what local/national funding split do you think fair.

Notwithstanding the Monkey Puzzle tree and Brockhole scandal, which decisions would you see being different for the better if your system was in place? Please don't say 'Via Ferrata' !!!!!
SB, Breaking News..... It all seems to be in hand: http://www.lakedistr ict.gov.uk/aboutus/g overnancereview Interesting links at the bottom. What balance of directly elected local representation to national representation do you want, and with your desire for true democracy do you agree the rest of the country should be able to directly elect their 'members', and what local/national funding split do you think fair. Notwithstanding the Monkey Puzzle tree and Brockhole scandal, which decisions would you see being different for the better if your system was in place? Please don't say 'Via Ferrata' !!!!! Stick in the Mud

10:45pm Fri 23 Nov 12

Simon Butterworth says...

Stick in the Mud - you hide behind your anonymous name which reduces your credibility. Have the courage to tell me your name and where you are then we can have a dialogue.

I frequently get on to my locally elected councillors who are powerless to intercede. You have made an assumption that I want local people who agree with me. That is not how democracy works. I want people properly elected and properly accountable who will hold the officers of the park to account on behalf of the people they represent. This weeks WG reports a huge operating deficit, and you can check the details in reports of the LDNPA Website.
Stick in the Mud - you hide behind your anonymous name which reduces your credibility. Have the courage to tell me your name and where you are then we can have a dialogue. I frequently get on to my locally elected councillors who are powerless to intercede. You have made an assumption that I want local people who agree with me. That is not how democracy works. I want people properly elected and properly accountable who will hold the officers of the park to account on behalf of the people they represent. This weeks WG reports a huge operating deficit, and you can check the details in reports of the LDNPA Website. Simon Butterworth

10:54pm Fri 23 Nov 12

Simon Butterworth says...

Dear SitM,

It isn't breaking news, it has been on there for months.

Keep up with the game
Dear SitM, It isn't breaking news, it has been on there for months. Keep up with the game Simon Butterworth

7:24am Sat 24 Nov 12

A view From Cumbria says...

I am pleased that Tim Farron is at last following with my Conservative campaign from several years ago. Better late than never. I was a pariah when I was chairman of Yorkshire Dales for promoting this. Some of my fellow chairmen, looked around and thought they might not be re-appointed.

Actually the present indirect elections do not necessarily produce a majority who are from the area of the parks, because of balance rules. Not all of the local members of LDNPA are from the area of the park and that is more of a problem in other parks.

It would be true to say that CNP, YDS and FOLD are all to a greater or lesser extent unesy with the concept of direct elections to NPAs.

It is not enough simply to replace parish members with directly elected members, all 16 non SoS members should be elected. STV would be the best system as that would ensure that everyone who chose to vote had some representative.

There is a place for SoS appointees but they should represent England as a whole and not just the Rambers and CNP.
I am pleased that Tim Farron is at last following with my Conservative campaign from several years ago. Better late than never. I was a pariah when I was chairman of Yorkshire Dales for promoting this. Some of my fellow chairmen, looked around and thought they might not be re-appointed. Actually the present indirect elections do not necessarily produce a majority who are from the area of the parks, because of balance rules. Not all of the local members of LDNPA are from the area of the park and that is more of a problem in other parks. It would be true to say that CNP, YDS and FOLD are all to a greater or lesser extent unesy with the concept of direct elections to NPAs. It is not enough simply to replace parish members with directly elected members, all 16 non SoS members should be elected. STV would be the best system as that would ensure that everyone who chose to vote had some representative. There is a place for SoS appointees but they should represent England as a whole and not just the Rambers and CNP. A view From Cumbria

7:24am Sat 24 Nov 12

A view From Cumbria says...

I am pleased that Tim Farron is at last following with my Conservative campaign from several years ago. Better late than never. I was a pariah when I was chairman of Yorkshire Dales for promoting this. Some of my fellow chairmen, looked around and thought they might not be re-appointed.

Actually the present indirect elections do not necessarily produce a majority who are from the area of the parks, because of balance rules. Not all of the local members of LDNPA are from the area of the park and that is more of a problem in other parks.

It would be true to say that CNP, YDS and FOLD are all to a greater or lesser extent unesy with the concept of direct elections to NPAs.

It is not enough simply to replace parish members with directly elected members, all 16 non SoS members should be elected. STV would be the best system as that would ensure that everyone who chose to vote had some representative.

There is a place for SoS appointees but they should represent England as a whole and not just the Rambers and CNP.
I am pleased that Tim Farron is at last following with my Conservative campaign from several years ago. Better late than never. I was a pariah when I was chairman of Yorkshire Dales for promoting this. Some of my fellow chairmen, looked around and thought they might not be re-appointed. Actually the present indirect elections do not necessarily produce a majority who are from the area of the parks, because of balance rules. Not all of the local members of LDNPA are from the area of the park and that is more of a problem in other parks. It would be true to say that CNP, YDS and FOLD are all to a greater or lesser extent unesy with the concept of direct elections to NPAs. It is not enough simply to replace parish members with directly elected members, all 16 non SoS members should be elected. STV would be the best system as that would ensure that everyone who chose to vote had some representative. There is a place for SoS appointees but they should represent England as a whole and not just the Rambers and CNP. A view From Cumbria

7:25am Sat 24 Nov 12

A view From Cumbria says...

apologies for the double post
apologies for the double post A view From Cumbria

9:59am Sat 24 Nov 12

craggy says...

And so he has done it again, The name Tim Farron is now well and truly in the middle of the debate without him lifting a finger or even declaring where he stands! Very clever.
And so he has done it again, The name Tim Farron is now well and truly in the middle of the debate without him lifting a finger or even declaring where he stands! Very clever. craggy

12:55pm Sat 24 Nov 12

Stick in the Mud says...

SB: Grow up.

......getting back to my original point.
I'm assuming that 'securing a debate' is difficult and a big deal, so I'm questioning why TF has put his considerable talents behind getting one for this particular cause over others affecting his constituency. He champions local voices and accountability, but I would wager this issue would not be in the top 10 of his constituents concerns.

What is his agenda?

The Gazette is somewhat to blame for this. They seem to blindly copy+paste whatever TF HQ puts out without question. Why are the journalists not asking questions:
Does he think this is one of his constituents priorities.
What structure does he want for the LDNPA.
What balance between local and national interest does he think is reasonable.
Should residents contribute more of the funds in return for a greater say.
Does he think the LD's 'members' of the LDNPA are doing a bad job.
SB: Grow up. ......getting back to my original point. I'm assuming that 'securing a debate' is difficult and a big deal, so I'm questioning why TF has put his considerable talents behind getting one for this particular cause over others affecting his constituency. He champions local voices and accountability, but I would wager this issue would not be in the top 10 of his constituents concerns. What is his agenda? The Gazette is somewhat to blame for this. They seem to blindly copy+paste whatever TF HQ puts out without question. Why are the journalists not asking questions: Does he think this is one of his constituents priorities. What structure does he want for the LDNPA. What balance between local and national interest does he think is reasonable. Should residents contribute more of the funds in return for a greater say. Does he think the LD's 'members' of the LDNPA are doing a bad job. Stick in the Mud

3:47pm Sat 24 Nov 12

Scots Guardsman says...

The usual credulous reporting from the Gazette where TF is concerned.

TF votes one way in London and then says something else locally, rushing to claim credit if he thinks it's popular and strangely absent when the policies of the Government hurt local people.
The usual credulous reporting from the Gazette where TF is concerned. TF votes one way in London and then says something else locally, rushing to claim credit if he thinks it's popular and strangely absent when the policies of the Government hurt local people. Scots Guardsman

4:44pm Mon 26 Nov 12

twitchy says...

The funds for the National Parks should be paid to the elected members of the relevant councils, The funds should then be allocated to NPs on the basis of performance and on the ability to deliver their statutory duties.
Presently the LDNPA are letting park down, they have grown corporate heads and allowed a nasty corporate head or two to run it.
The fabric of the park is being neglected whilst the focus is on competing with local businesses,franchisi
ng a public owned and funded Visitor Centre and destroying a listed garden with a theme park development.
There are simular destrutive plans for the Glebe at Bowness Bay.
Given public funding and 400+ volunteers most people could run a successful business.
Their remitt in part is to help to PROMOTE local businesses and at a time when nationally there has been a downturn in trade and this is reflected locally the last thing that is needed is unfair competition on the scale proposed.
The funds for the National Parks should be paid to the elected members of the relevant councils, The funds should then be allocated to NPs on the basis of performance and on the ability to deliver their statutory duties. Presently the LDNPA are letting park down, they have grown corporate heads and allowed a nasty corporate head or two to run it. The fabric of the park is being neglected whilst the focus is on competing with local businesses,franchisi ng a public owned and funded Visitor Centre and destroying a listed garden with a theme park development. There are simular destrutive plans for the Glebe at Bowness Bay. Given public funding and 400+ volunteers most people could run a successful business. Their remitt in part is to help to PROMOTE local businesses and at a time when nationally there has been a downturn in trade and this is reflected locally the last thing that is needed is unfair competition on the scale proposed. twitchy

4:45pm Mon 26 Nov 12

twitchy says...

The funds for the National Parks should be paid to the elected members of the relevant councils, The funds should then be allocated to NPs on the basis of performance and on the ability to deliver their statutory duties.
Presently the LDNPA are letting park down, they have grown corporate heads and allowed a nasty corporate head or two to run it.
The fabric of the park is being neglected whilst the focus is on competing with local businesses,franchisi
ng a public owned and funded Visitor Centre and destroying a listed garden with a theme park development.
There are simular destrutive plans for the Glebe at Bowness Bay.
Given public funding and 400+ volunteers most people could run a successful business.
Their remitt in part is to help to PROMOTE local businesses and at a time when nationally there has been a downturn in trade and this is reflected locally the last thing that is needed is unfair competition on the scale proposed.
The funds for the National Parks should be paid to the elected members of the relevant councils, The funds should then be allocated to NPs on the basis of performance and on the ability to deliver their statutory duties. Presently the LDNPA are letting park down, they have grown corporate heads and allowed a nasty corporate head or two to run it. The fabric of the park is being neglected whilst the focus is on competing with local businesses,franchisi ng a public owned and funded Visitor Centre and destroying a listed garden with a theme park development. There are simular destrutive plans for the Glebe at Bowness Bay. Given public funding and 400+ volunteers most people could run a successful business. Their remitt in part is to help to PROMOTE local businesses and at a time when nationally there has been a downturn in trade and this is reflected locally the last thing that is needed is unfair competition on the scale proposed. twitchy

11:23pm Wed 28 Nov 12

PieWoman says...

You can see the debate here - http://www.parliamen
tlive.tv/Main/Player
.aspx?meetingId=1191
0 from 2:13:10 onwards

PieWoman
You can see the debate here - http://www.parliamen tlive.tv/Main/Player .aspx?meetingId=1191 0 from 2:13:10 onwards PieWoman PieWoman

1:39am Thu 29 Nov 12

twitchy says...

PieWoman wrote:
You can see the debate here - http://www.parliamen

tlive.tv/Main/Player

.aspx?meetingId=1191

0 from 2:13:10 onwards

PieWoman
Be afraid, be very afraid!!
[quote][p][bold]PieWoman[/bold] wrote: You can see the debate here - http://www.parliamen tlive.tv/Main/Player .aspx?meetingId=1191 0 from 2:13:10 onwards PieWoman[/p][/quote]Be afraid, be very afraid!! twitchy

9:53pm Thu 29 Nov 12

PieWoman says...

twitchy wrote:
PieWoman wrote:
You can see the debate here - http://www.parliamen


tlive.tv/Main/Player


.aspx?meetingId=1191


0 from 2:13:10 onwards

PieWoman
Be afraid, be very afraid!!
What exactly should I be afraid of?
[quote][p][bold]twitchy[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]PieWoman[/bold] wrote: You can see the debate here - http://www.parliamen tlive.tv/Main/Player .aspx?meetingId=1191 0 from 2:13:10 onwards PieWoman[/p][/quote]Be afraid, be very afraid!![/p][/quote]What exactly should I be afraid of? PieWoman

10:05pm Thu 29 Nov 12

twitchy says...

PieWoman wrote:
twitchy wrote:
PieWoman wrote:
You can see the debate here - http://www.parliamen



tlive.tv/Main/Player



.aspx?meetingId=1191



0 from 2:13:10 onwards

PieWoman
Be afraid, be very afraid!!
What exactly should I be afraid of?
Tims ont warpath!!
[quote][p][bold]PieWoman[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]twitchy[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]PieWoman[/bold] wrote: You can see the debate here - http://www.parliamen tlive.tv/Main/Player .aspx?meetingId=1191 0 from 2:13:10 onwards PieWoman[/p][/quote]Be afraid, be very afraid!![/p][/quote]What exactly should I be afraid of?[/p][/quote]Tims ont warpath!! twitchy

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