Page last updated at 16:28 GMT, Wednesday, 26 March 2008

Adviser to oversee park planning

Brecon Beacons (picture: Ken Jones)
The park says issues raised by the inquiry are being tackled

A consultant has been appointed to advise a national park about the future of its planning services after an inquiry uncovered serious failings.

The inquiry was critical of the way officials in the Brecon Beacons handled an application for a caravan park.

Developers and planning agents have also complained about the length of time taken to process applications.

Meanwhile, a planned vote of no confidence in the park's chief executive did not take place.

Wednesday's meeting in Brecon followed the critical inquiry into the planning approval given to a caravan park at Gilestone Farm in Talybont-on-Usk, near Brecon.

Following the independent inquiry, the park authority apologised and promised to make changes to its planning services.

'Existing problems'

The Welsh Assembly Government has also urged the park to improve the way it handles planning inquiries, which includes appointing the independent adviser.

Rural Development Minister Jane Davidson attended Wednesday's meeting to review the park's progress, and officially appointed the consultant.

Ms Davidson said: "I have made clear to the authority's members today that the Welsh Assembly Government expects them to take swift and appropriate action to deliver a fully effective planning control service.

"The authority has reacted quickly in relation to the independent report and has already started to make the necessary improvements."

On 14 March, Dyfed-Powys Police confirmed they had met officials from the national park.

Papers from the critical inquiry were handed to officers during the meeting.




video and audio news
Environment minister Jane Davidson talks about why she may intervene at a park authority.



SEE ALSO
Park inquiry papers with police
14 Mar 08 |  Mid Wales
Planning delays 'costing firms'
13 Mar 08 |  Mid Wales
Calls to axe park planning power
26 Feb 08 |  Mid Wales
Park planners face calls to quit
22 Jan 08 |  Mid Wales

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