Peak resident to chair two leading organisations

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A Peak District resident has been elected to chair two of the UK’s leading organisations that look after and promote national park landscapes.

High Peak borough councillor, Tony Favell, MBE, is the new chair of National Parks UK www.nationalparks.gov.uk and was unanimously re-elected as chair of the Peak District National Park Authority. Cllr Favell has chaired the Authority since March 2011.

A resident of Edale for 44 years, Cllr Favell is a former MP for Stockport who founded a solicitors’ practice in Hathersage and is a former president of Hope Show and the Longshaw Sheepdog Trials Association.

Cllr Favell said: “I’m delighted to have been elected chair of National Parks UK and very grateful to have been re-elected chair of the Peak District National Park Authority.

“National parks offer fantastic opportunities for millions of people to experience the natural environment, contributing to the economy and quality of life. Having lived and worked in the Peak District since I was 30, I appreciate that national parks are not only national treasures for their iconic landscapes, wildlife and cultural heritage but a vital part of the UK’s visitor economy.

“Tourism is one of the main economic drivers of rural economies and the English National Parks alone contribute over £4billion to the economy. Visitors are crucial to rural tourism and help sustain thousands of businesses and employ thousands of people.

“With more financial challenges in the public sector to face in the coming year, it is more important than ever that we work together to protect the environment, support the economy, boost rural tourism and ensure people have fun and enjoy our wonderful landscapes.”

Five other Peak District National Park Authority appointments were made at the meeting.

Geoff Nickolds, a member appointed by the Defra Secretary of State for his expertise in conservation, recreation management and access to the countryside, was unanimously re-elected as deputy chair of the Authority.

Cllr Lesley Roberts was re-elected chair of the planning committee. Cllr Roberts is a parish representative who lives in the national park at Upper Hulme in Staffordshire.

Newly elected vice-chair of planning is Paul Ancell from Macclesfield. Appointed to the Authority by the Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs for his expertise in planning, Mr Ancell is also the Authority’s member representative for asset management issues.

Re-elected chair of the audit, resources and performance committee was Christopher Pennell.

Newly elected as vice-chair of audit, resources and performance was Cllr Chris Furness, a Derbyshire Dales District Council representative from Bradwell. Cllr Furness is also a representative on the Derbyshire Archaeological Advisory Committee and the Derwent Valley Community Rail Partnership.

Authority chair Cllr Favell thanked Cllr Twigg former planning vice-chair for her contribution.

He also welcomed three new members after a change of ruling party from Conservative to Labour at Derbyshire County Council in recent elections. They are Cllr Andy Botham from Matlock, Cllr Steve Marshall-Clarke from Alfreton and Cllr Ellie Wilcox from Tintwistle.

Cllr Favell paid tribute to the contributions of the members they replaced: Cllr Garry Purdy former vice-chair of audit, resources and performance committee, Marian Stockdale and Barrie Taylor.

More details are available on www.peakdistrict.gov.uk/members