LI policy consultant to sit on newly established Welsh landscape panel
Carl Sargeant, Welsh Minister for Natural Resources, has announced that the LI’s policy consultant for Wales, Dr Ruth Williams, will sit on an independent panel appointed to review of the governance arrangements for Wales’ designated landscapes.
The panel will be chaired by Professor Terry Marsden, director of Cardiff University’s Sustainable Places Research Institute, and will also include former Countryside Council for Wales chair and Forestry Commission for Wales national committee member John Lloyd-Jones.
Making the announcement, the minister said: ‘Our designated landscapes are among key things that make Wales distinctive, ‘Their landscapes, and the communities within them, are an important part of what makes Wales special environmentally, socially and culturally.’ They also play a significant economic role, he adds, ‘with the qualities that make them special attracting many millions of visitors every year’.
He says he wants to ensure that Wales’ designated landscapes ‘are best equipped to meet current and future challenges while building upon their internationally recognised status’, and that the review will consider whether the existing arrangements are best-placed to deliver these objectives; ‘and, if not, what changes should be made in order to achieve them’.
The review will be carried out in two stages and at each stage the panel will call for evidence and seek views from stakeholders, communities within the designated landscapes and the wider general public. Evidence gathering activities including written submissions, face-to-face meetings, public workshops and an online consultation will be arranged.
Stage one will examine the designations themselves, looking at the purposes of these landscapes and the merits of classifying Wales’ designated landscapes under one type of designation.
Stage two will consider the governance arrangements of designated landscapes. It will review governance and management arrangements, and consider the recommendations of the Commission on Public Service Governance and Delivery as part of this. It will take account of the Planning (Wales) Bill in respect of the future arrangements for planning in National Parks.
‘In conducting our work, and making our recommendations, it will be particularly important that we gather a variety of types of evidence from both stakeholders and members of the public so I urge all those with an interest to have their say,’ says panel chair, Professor Terry Marsden.
The detailed remit and timetable for the panel can be found here.