To ask Her Majesty's Government when they will announce how they plan to take forward Natural England's recommendation in September 2011 to extend the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales National Parks; whether they will propose a public inquiry; and what are the reasons for their delay in responding.
While the proposed extensions were on public deposit they attracted over 3,000 responses of all kinds. These included objections from local authorities which, under the national parks legislation, means that there has to be a public inquiry. The delay has been in setting up that inquiry, which should be announced imminently. As soon as Ministers formally announce the inquiry, details will be made available on Defra's website and everyone who made an objection will also be contacted to see whether they wish to appear.