This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government
The Myth - The Guardian and Telegraph reported that Defra is going to force managers into promoting economic development of National Parks, suggesting that economic development will be placed on an equal footing to conservation, making it easier for developments such as new housing estates and business parks to gain planning. The Telegraph also said that some of our parks could lose their status as National parks because of budget cuts.
The Truth - We are not forcing anyone to promote economic development and housing estates and business parks will not start appearing in our National Parks. National Parks have two statutory purposes - conservation, and recreation, but they also bring economic benefits to the region, for example tourism. Part of the role of National Park Authorities is to work with the local community to promote economical development and social well-being of the area. Our National Parks are not going to lose their status because of budget cuts.
The new consultation, launched last week, will look at ways to improve how National Parks are managed to give local people more say in how they’re run.