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Last Updated: Wednesday, 14 September 2005, 20:26 GMT 21:26 UK
Lakes' heritage plea considered
Lake District
The area has been trying for World Heritage status since 1985
Calls to make the Lake District a World Heritage Site may get the backing of council bosses in Cumbria.

The Lake District National Park Authority (LDNPA) has been trying since 1985 to win United Nations approval.

A final meeting of interested parties dubbed a "make your mind up" event is to be held at Wray Castle on the banks of Windermere in October.

But Cumbria County Council was meeting on Thursday to decide whether to add its support to the authority's bid.

A full meeting of the council in Kendal was expected to consider three options put forward by a special panel set up to investigate the advantages of World Heritage Site Status.

It suggests that such a move could bring increased international recognition for the Lake District, attract more tourism and help protect traditional farming.

'Complex question'

However, it also predicts unwelcome constraints on development, increased bureaucracy and a negative effect on tourism in neighbouring areas.

Councillors are facing three options; unconditional backing for the bid, refuse support for the plan or take part in the preparation work while reserving the right to withdraw at a later date.

Tim Stoddard, leader of Cumbria County Council, said: "Whether or not we should be pushing for World Heritage Site status is a complex question with plenty of pros and cons to consider so we're expecting a lively debate on Thursday."

The LDNPA claims it will cost 350,000 to fund an application.

In May, members of the authority agreed it was time to make a final decision on the World Heritage bid, which was first suggested more than 20 years ago.

Decision on Lakes' heritage plea
20 Aug 05 |  Cumbria
Lakes must attract 'more young'
05 Aug 05 |  Cumbria

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