Southern Boundary Partnership

Friends of the Lake District submitted a formal request to extend the southern boundary of the Lake District National Park to Natural England on 18 June 2019.

A new extension to the National Park is being proposed by the Friends of the Lake District and the Southern Boundary Partnership.

A representative from Lowick Parish Council has been attending the Southern Boundary Partnership meetings. 

Role and function of the coordination group

  • Share information and communications on key developments of the
    case for an extension.
  • Issue media statements on common issues impacting the Parish
    Councils and promote understanding of the work of the Southern
    Boundary Partnership.
  • Provide feedback to each Parish Council on the issues, concerns and
    agreed actions taken by the Southern Boundary Partnership.
  • Develop an extended network and membership of Parish Councils in
    meeting the aims of the Southern Boundary Partnership.
  • Collaborate with other groups, local authorities and wider
    stakeholders to enhance the strength of the case for an extension.
  • Lobby key decision makers.

Minutes and supporting documents

Friends of the Lake District

Friends of the Lake District have submitted a formal request to extend the southern boundary of the Lake District National Park to Natural England (NE) for its consideration. The extension being proposed incorporates the area between Silecroft and Grange-over-Sands to include the Furness and Cartmel peninsulas and the majestic estuaries of the Duddon, Leven and Kent rivers. The local communities have long been aware of the quality of the landscape of this area and its close relationship and resemblance to the landscape character, geology, cultural history and wildlife of the adjacent National Park.

The recent expansion to the Lake District’s eastern boundary in 2016 and the award of World Heritage Status to the National Park in 2017 provided further impetus to parish councils to act on behalf of their communities and to resolve what many felt to be the ‘unfinished business’ of the establishment of National Parks 70 years ago.  This work has been ongoing amongst a substantial number of Parish Councils since 2018 as the ‘Southern Boundary Partnership’ (SBP) in partnership with the landscape charity Friends of the Lake District, an organisation that was instrumental in the extension to the eastern fringes of the National Park in 2016, and with unique expertise in the protection and enhancement of Lake District and Cumbrian landscapes.

Following its research findings, and with the support of the SBP, Friends of the Lake District has authored and submitted a proposal to Natural England stating that a strong and urgent case can be made for a further boundary extension to the Lake District National Park. The SBP has organised a number of ‘community conversation’ events for local residents and businesses to discuss this proposal for a southern boundary extension and to view the research and mapping submitted to Natural England.  The ‘community conversations’ are in advance of the formal process for National Park designation and are being held as follows:

The final decision for any extension to the southern boundary of the Lake District will rest with Natural England and the Secretary of State for the Environment but it may be that scrutiny of the evidence will not begin until the outcomes of the Government’s Glover Review of National Parks are revealed in the Autumn. Even then, as was the case with the 2016 extension to the Lake District and the Yorkshire Dales, the process could be a protracted one.

A substantial consultation would be required and would involve the county council, the district councils, and the National Park Authority and parish councils who have land within the area to be designated. As good practice, Natural England would also, throughout the consultation process, seek engagement with key stakeholders and the general public. The outcome of such a consultation may lead to changes to the proposed extension.

More information about the submission can be found on the Friends of the Lake District website.