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National Parks

Volume 885: debated on Monday 3 February 1975

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asked the Secretary of State for Defence (1) how much national park land he has released for public use over the past two years;(2) if he has any plans to release more national park land for use by the general public.

Within the last two years my Department has arranged to allow greater access to 2,400 acres of land in national parks over which we have firing rights, has relinquished such rights completely over a further 460 acres, and has declared eight acres surplus to defence requirements.In addition, we intend to meet the recommendations made in the report of the Defence Lands Committee 1971–73 to allow greater access to 8,500 acres, to relinquish rights over a further 301 acres, and to dispose of 579 acres of freehold and leasehold land in national parks. The use to which land is put after disposal is a matter for the new owners and the planning authorities.

asked the Secretary of State for Defence what is the total acreage of national park land owned or leased by the Ministry of Defence.

Approximately 71,000 acres of freehold and 9,000 acres of leasehold. I would draw my hon. Friend's attention to the table on pages 61–63 of the report of the Defence Lands Committee 1971–73.