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Rosedale East Mines by Ebor Images/North York Moors National ParkRosedale East Mines by Ebor Images/North York Moors National Park

Working together for the future of the North York Moors National Park

Every few years there comes a fresh opportunity to take a look at how we want the North York Moors National Park to be in the future, and how it can be managed to achieve this future.

In doing this we would really like your ideas – the people who live and work in, care for and visit this special place. Generation after generation has helped create this landscape, from moorland, dale and forest, to village, farm and field. Many millions more cherish this place as visitors and supporters.

Landing the catch by Ceri Oakes

Over the course of 2021, the North York Moors National Park Authority will be creating a new plan for the National Park that will look to how we shape this future. We want this ‘Management Plan’ to be ambitious but deliverable; we want to anticipate the challenges ahead and all work together to respond to them.

Our task is to create a shared vision that we can all agree on, because that’s the best way to pass the National Park on to future generations in an even better state. What do we value about our landscapes? What role should the National Park play in a post-COVID world? How should it help address climate change and nature recovery? What sort of place do people want to grow up in or grow old in?

This then is your chance to have your say about the future of the North York Moors National Park. You’ll have your own ideas of what the National Park could and should be like in twenty years’ time. Every viewpoint is valid and matters. The more perspectives that are offered, the stronger the overall plan and our shared vision will be.

To start with, we’ve included some discussion prompts below, grouped into three broad themes. You can also tell us about any work that is happening now, or that is planned, or that in your opinion needs to happen.

There's no need to answer everything – the point is to let us know what you think the main issues are and what our work should focus on. This is only the start - there will of course be further opportunities to make your views known as the plan is prepared.

Think of this as the start of a conversation about the future. It’s always an important discussion to have, though perhaps – after the experiences of the last year – more vital than ever before. Tell us your thoughts and hopes. Be bold. It’s your National Park and together we can plan effectively for better days ahead.

Please let us know your thoughts by email: managementplan@northyorkmoors.org.uk

It would very helpful if you could respond with initial comments by 1 April, however we'll be keen to receive further input throughout the Management Plan process.


Theme 1 - Leading nature recovery

Management Plan Infographic

Where do we need to be? We think the important issues will be:

  1. The need to work together to provide a connected, resilient landscape which enables wildlife to thrive.
  2. Climate change and the requirement for adaptation of landscapes and habitats in the National Park. National Parks may be expected to do more to help meet net zero targets in terms of emissions.
  3. Identifying ‘Nature Recovery Networks’ and the actions needed to address decline. The Government has also committed to thirty percent of the UK being protected for its biodiversity.
  4. The decline of some key habitats in the National Park, such as species-rich grassland and peat bog.
  5. Conserving our ‘special qualities’ – including dramatic contrasting landscapes, dark night skies, open moorland, unique archaeology and locally distinctive buildings.

How will we get there?

Discussion prompts:

  • What are the nature recovery priorities for the North York Moors? What does evidence tell us are key pinch points?
  • What should be the priorities for the different landscapes of the North York Moors? Should we identify any strategic areas of landscape change – for example, through woodland creation or natural regeneration of moorland? Where should we prioritise our activities (on the coast, for example)?
  • What actions could be taken in the National Park to combat climate change more generally? What would have the biggest impact?
  • Do you have any projects you are doing or would like to do that would help deliver a new vision for the North York Moors National Park?

Theme 2 – Landscapes for all

Management Plan Infographic

Where do we need to be? We think the most important issues will be:

  1. Striking the right balance between the volume of visitors and the need to conserve and enhance the National Park and its fragile ecosystems.
  2. The need to improve access and enhance the quality of experience for a wider audience.
  3. The need to increase awareness and opportunities amongst underserved and minority communities to help them to enjoy the National Park.
  4. The role that the National Park can play in improving the nation's well-being, especially for communities within and close to the National Park.
  5. Building the reputation and brand of the North York Moors through championing our special qualities and experiences.

How will we get there?

Discussion prompts:

  • How do we reach out and be more relevant to a wider audience, including those in underserved and minority communities?
  • How do we find the right balance between encouraging more visitors and conserving and enhancing the National Park?
  • How do we promote visits to the National Park whilst reducing emissions from private transport?
  • What does a quality, high-value and sustainable tourism offer mean to you?
  • What can we do to increase people’s understanding of what this National Park has to offer?
  • How can the National Park help improve the nation’s physical and mental health?
  • Do you have any projects you are doing or would like to do that would help deliver a new vision for the North York Moors National Park?

Theme 3 – Living and working landscapes

Management Plan Infographics

Where do we need to be? We think the most important issues will be:

  1. The impact of changes in agricultural policy and support for the farming sector.
  2. Overcoming the tensions between the recreational shooting and broader conservation interests.
  3. The future of moorland management.
  4. Creating the conditions that foster new sources of growth from the green economy and better digital infrastructure.
  5. The implications of a declining and ageing population within the National Park.
  6. High housing costs in a low-wage economy.
  7. How to improve broadband and mobile connectivity.
  8. How to fully value our historic buildings, including the potential for reducing their carbon footprint.

How will we get there?

Discussion prompts:

  • What is our vision for how the National Park will manage its land, and how will we support this change?
  • How do we maximise the benefits of the new Environmental Land Management scheme to support sustainable farm businesses?
  • How can we best create the opportunities to support growth and new businesses without harming the landscape and environment?
  • How do we best manage tensions between the economic and conservation benefits of shooting against concerns associated with predator control, access and other factors?
  • How can organisations in the National Park work towards supporting thriving communities?

Finally, we would also invite you to think about these further discussion points:

  • What do you think a vision for 2040 should say? How can we quickly and simply articulate an inspiring vision? One that tells the story of how we want the North York Moors to be in twenty years’ time and is specific to our National Park?
  • What would you say are the most important qualities of the National Park? What is special about it to you? Our current Management Plan has a list of these ‘special qualities’ in its inside cover.
Please share your thoughts with us.

We're asking for initial feedback by 1 April, with further input as the Management Plan and thinking evolves over 2021. If you would like to receive updates on the Management Plan, or want any further information via email, please contact:

managementplan@northyorkmoors.org.uk

www.northyorkmoors.org.uk/managementplan