Skip to main content

Clause 5—(National Parks)

Volume 467: debated on Tuesday 19 July 1949

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.

I beg to move, in page 3, line 13, to leave out "community as a whole," and insert "public."

This is a drafting Amendment. There was a great deal of discussion on these words, and I think the word "public" is right.

As I suggested the word "public" to the right hon. Gentleman. I shall support his Amendment.

Amendment agreed to.

I beg to move, in page 3, line 30, to leave out from "the," to end of line 32, and insert: "needs of agriculture and forestry."

The object of this Amendment is to require the National Parks Commission and the local planning authorities to have due regard to the needs of agriculture and forestry. Here again there was a great deal of discussion in Committee, when the Clause as originally drawn contained a number of phrases which I admit were a little uncertain in their implication and also confusing. I offered to take the matter back and see whether I could improve on it, and I believe that this is an improvement. There are two points. The first is that the words "as then established in the parks" have gone entirely, and there was also the point about whether we should refer to local industry or rural industry. On the whole, I have come to the conclusion that it is quite unnecessary to refer to these matters.

What we want to emphasise is that the authorities, in planning the area, should have regard to the needs of agriculture and forestry. Those are the outstanding and dominating questions which really determine the character of the national parks, and to incorporate a great many other forms of activity would simply make the whole thing meaningless. I hope that, while I wish to repeat what I said in the Committee that the intention is to maintain the general character of the national park areas, it is to be a living community and the life of the area will go on. Nevertheless, agriculture and forestry will always be the dominating forms of activity, and I think it right that this, and this alone, should be emphasised.

I was glad to hear the Minister say that it has got to be a living community because the Clause as originally drafted implied that it should be static. Agriculture can never be static; obviously, to be static would be to die. I am glad the right hon. Gentleman has altered the Clause in the way he has.

Amendment agreed to.