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Extension plans to include Borrowdale and Shap

The area around Borrowdale that is being considered for National Park status Credit: ITV News Border

The most recent consultation into the extension plans, which would cover Borrowdale and Shap, generated more than 3,000 responses.

Over 90% were in favour of the extensions.

The Campaign for National Parks President Ben Fogle says:

"The landscapes being considered by this Public Inquiry are the finest undesignated tracts of countryside in England.

"National Park status will not only help to protect the natural beauty and wildlife of these areas, but provide a much needed boost to the rural economy in these tough economic times."

The area around Sizergh Castle. Credit: ITV News Border

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Parliamentary debate secured on National Park elections

South Lakes MP Tim Farron has secured a debate in Parliament on whether to bring about direct elections to the boards of National Park authorities across the UK.

Mr Farron says it is essential for National Park boards to contain elected representatives so they are accountable for their decisions.

Mr Farron says that controversial decisions taken by the Lake District national park board over its Brockhole site on the banks of Lake Windermere have served as a reminder of this issue.

Commenting, Tim said:

“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. I hope the minister 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."_

– Tim Farron MP

The debate will take place on Wednesday 28th November in Westminster Hall.

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