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We are deeply dismayed by the inspector’s recommendation to deregister the extensive Warcop commons, in the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. This follows a public inquiry at which we appeared as an objector with legal representation. The inspector recommends Cumbria County Council to approve the deregistration of most of Burton, Hilton and Murton Fells.
Says our general secretary, Kate Ashbrook: ‘If the county councillors agree to this it will be the largest inclosure of common land since the major inclosures of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. It is a vast area of fine upland landscape, and we are suspicious as to what the Ministry of Defence might try to do next on this land. We shall be reviewing the inspector’s recommendations carefully with our lawyers.’
The society, along with the Foundation for Common Land, the Friends of the Lake District, local commoners and parish councils, opposed the applications, believing them to be entirely unnecessary.