Plea for talks on Park issue

Moyle District Council has agreed to write to the new Minister For The Environment Mark H Durkan inviting him to meet with the council to discuss his plans for a national park in The Causeway Coast and Glens.

The matter was raised at the council meeting on Monday the 29th of July by Glens Sinn Fein Councillor Colum Thompson who had referred to plans previously debated by Mr. Durkan’s predecessor, Alex Atwood.

Speaking after the meeting Councillor Thompson said: “The previous Minister for the Environment Alex Attwood spurned several opportunities to meet with both the people of the area and Moyle District Council.

“The residents of the Causeway Coast and Glens have made their views on a national park perfectly clear and at a public meeting several months ago which was attended by over eight hundred people not one person was in favour of designating The Causeway Coast and Glens as a national park.

“The imposition of national park status would bring with it a huge amount of unnecessary red tape for farmers, businesses and residents alike.

“I would hope that the new Minister would be more proactive than his predecessor in consulting with the local community and actually taking their views onboard.”

Environment Minister Alex Attwood had indicated his intention to create two National Parks in Northern Ireland and enabled legislation to be put before the Assembly in December 2012.

The three areas under immediate consideration were the Mournes, Fermanagh Lakelands and the CausewayCoast and Glens. The Mournes area mounted opposition for a number of years and Cllr. Thompson hopes Moyle residents will do the same. There has already been active support from Moyle District Council.