Thirlmere Zipwire Proposal


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By Lancashire Lad on 30/11/17 at 5:36pm

Re WalkLakes blog post: - https://www.walklakes.co.uk/opus52526.html

I would contend that zip wires crossing the A591 and parts of Thirlmere itself should be no more welcome than a windfarm, or a line of pylons and electricity lines would be in that area!

They can put as much marketing "spin" on this as they like, but at the end of the day it is nothing more than a profit driven proposal designed to line the pockets of Treetop Trek's owners and their families. Treetop Trek is a private limited company, owned by its Directors, Officers, and immediate family members. (As may be seen by doing a quick Companies House check for "Treetop Trek", or "Company number 06785855".

They say that their consultations showed that most respondents were in favour of the proposal??????? Odd then, that a websearch for "Thirlmere Zipwire Proposal" brings up any number of results showing exactly the opposite! - Not least of which, Facebook page "@zipoffThirlmere", currently having over 1150 followers!

It is perfectly true that Thirlmere and its immediate environs are the result of human enterprise, but it is not just any old reservoir. It was constructed well over 100 years ago in the Victorian era. As seen today, with the benefit of passing time, the reservoir blends in perfectly with the surrounding lakeland landscape. The ongoing re-introduction of deciduous trees only serving to enhance that situation.

The Lake District is an area of outstanding natural beauty, recently accredited with World Heritage Site status. - Zipwire attractions have no place in world heritage status sites of outstanding natural beauty!!!!!

The vast majority of Lake District visitors go there to immerse themselves in the tranquillity and beauty of the landscape. - If this proposal gets the go-ahead, it will set a precedent for future schemes of similar ilk,

There are many places that would be eminently suited to such schemes, but for my money, the tranquil heart of Lake District is most definitely not one of them!

Regards, Mike.


By Lancashire Lad on 15/12/17 at 5:48pm (last edited 15/12/17 at 7:34pm)

I've just seen (from the Grough twitter site - ( https://twitter.com/groughmag ), and the Tweets column here on WalkLakes website, that Terry Abraham (film maker) has resigned as ambassador for the Lake District Foundation in protest against the Thirlmere zip wires.

His resignation address can be viewed on You Tube: - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dow7tER ... e=youtu.be

I admire Mr Abraham's Lake District films immensely, and I admire his stance, morals, and ethics on resigning that position in protest against the Thirlmere Activity Hub planning application. - Well done that man!

In the name of what must surely be best for the future of the Lake District National Park, I hope that this latest development will receive the widest possible publicity.

Regards, Mike.


By Lancashire Lad on 15/12/17 at 6:48pm

I've just discovered this YouTube video by Andy Beck (Artist and author of the book "The Wainwrights in Colour") in which he visits the proposed zip-wire site.

THE PROPOSED ZIP WIRE OVER THIRLMERE https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=flBjWU3NM68

Very thought provoking and he may well have a valid point. - Why has a wide hard surfaced road recently been built over very steep ground within the forest, and which goes almost to the very point that the proposed zip wire take-off terminal will be constructed near the summit of Fisher Crag?

Do United Utilities know something about the outcome of this planning application already?

I urge everyone to search for and view that video - It is well worth a watch.

Regards, Mike.


By Lancashire Lad on 16/12/17 at 5:38pm

I've just read the St Johns Parish Council comments document. (One of the many documents available to view on LDNP Planning Application page in respect of this project: - ( LDNP Planning Reference: 7/2017/2298 ).

The following two points from section 89/17, "Public Participation" of that document, immediately caught my eye: -

Item 26 - "Mr Leafe Chief Executive of the LDNP is known to be in a relationship with a member of Tree Top Treks - Is this not a conflict of interests?".

An interesting question indeed! And, The more one reads/discovers in relation to this proposal, the more one senses the malodorous smell of things being not quite as transparent as they should be: -

Item 29, which includes: - ". . . the letter included a comment regarding the works that United Utilities have recently undertaken on the track at Fisher Crag. (a retrospective planning application is reported to have been received by the LDNPA . . . ".

Really? - A little more research confirms that the work to the track at Fisher Crag was indeed carried out prior to any planning application being submitted. That retrospective planning application was registered as recently as December 6th !!!!! See: - LDNPA Planning Reference: 7/2017/2307, registered 06-Dec-2017, Upgrade and improvement of existing forest track including creation of stacking areas and turning circle (retrospective).

How very convenient that this major forest track upgrade, undertaken without relevant planning permissions, ends in a turning circle that just happens to be within a few metres of the proposed western zip-wire take off point near the summit of Fisher Crag.

Regards, Mike.


By Lancashire Lad on 21/12/17 at 9:25am

A short, (and very worthwhile reading), article on this proposal: -

Roger Smith looks at the increasingly murky background to the zipwire proposal http://www.tgomagazine.co.uk/news/roger ... thirlmere/

I very much appreciate that WalkLakes is keeping this proposal in the headlines via its Twitter column.

But given the potential consequences for the Lake District National Park if this scheme gets approved, I'm rather surprised at the lack of other comment.

I sincerely hope that there is not a general apathy regarding this subject. Thirlmere was created as a reservoir more than five decades prior to the establishment of National Parks. But the way commercialism operates nowadays, if Lakeland's precious landscape gets defiled by unnecessary commercial development, it will be lost forever.

People fought long and hard to obtain National Park status for the Lake District. - Indeed, the conversion of Leatheswater/Wythburn Water (effectively two lakes joined by a narrow ford), into Thirlmere reservoir, during the 1880's-1890's, was pivotal in the later setting up of LDNP as the first of Britain's National Parks back in 1951.

The Sandford principle, which applies to Britain's National Parks states: - "If it appears that there is a conflict between conservation and development, the National Park Authority shall attach greater weight to the purpose of conserving and enhancing the natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage of the area".

That principle cannot be allowed to be quietly dismissed for nothing more than profit driven commercial enterprise, by those whom we entrust to manage and conserve our National Parks for this and future generations.

We have an ever decreasing amount of truly beautiful landscape in Britain, and there will undoubtedly be more pressures put on that landscape in future times. I urge everyone who loves the Lake District to search their conscience and decide whether a profit driven commercial scheme is worth more than the values that our National Parks stand for.

The final date for objections to this scheme is 2nd January 2018 - The offices to which those objections must be sent closes on 22nd December and doesn't open again until after the objections final date! Send your objections to: - and Cc to - - Attention of Kevin Richards, Case Officer.

Regards, Mike.


By Pmg on 21/12/17 at 9:17pm

Obviously Mike if this is allowed to go ahead in such underhand circumstances, then there is no hope for any scenic beautiful health renewing outdoors space - all will become available to monetary greed and taken to be turned into a playground. There are plenty places where this kind of activity would be fine and welcome - Thirlmere as part of a World Heritage Site and beautiful unspoiled place is not the place for this proposal. Pauline Greenhalgh


By ScoutScarShuffler on 22/12/17 at 10:48am

Certainly no apathy on my part but I am mind full and respect, that Walk Lakes doe`s not want to get hung up with the politics within the lakes. Other wise I would post links to the on line petition against the zip wires, and another excellent site that is keeping folks up to date with all the current news / developements on the proposal, which of course can also be found by a little Prudent googling. Yes I have signed the online petition and wherever possible am making people aware of it, and consider that the whole concept is a travesty and shows a complete dis - regard for everything that makes the lakes a special place for so many folk worldwide.


By Lancashire Lad on 22/12/17 at 1:59pm

ScoutScarShuffler

I think that WalkLakes are happy enough for members to express their opinions on this subject openly on the forum. Otherwise, they would not have invited people to do so, as they did at the end of their https://www.walklakes.co.uk/opus52526.html article, to which I had linked and responded when starting this thread.

I respect the fact that everyone is entitled to their own individual opinions on such matters, even where those opinions are diametrically opposed to mine. However, I genuinely do feel that this particular planning application could become another "pivotal" moment in the history of LDNP, (and indeed, all of Britain's National Parks), should it be approved.

I can think of no better way of phrasing my feelings on the subject than I had done above, when I said: - "I urge everyone who loves the Lake District to search their conscience and decide whether a profit driven commercial scheme is worth more than the values that our National Parks stand for".

I would just like to mention, since you say that you have signed an online petition, that online petitions and posting on websites (even as we are doing here!), whilst they certainly give a feel for the status of general opinion, won't affect the outcome. Only by emailing/writing to the LDNPA will people's opinions actually be given due consideration: - Those email addresses are: - and Cc to - - Attention of Kevin Richards, Case Officer.

Please folks, make sure that you have your voice properly heard. Quite literally, the future of LDNP as we know it might depend on it! One final comment - Since writing my post above, I understand that the closing date for comments has been extended to 12th January.

Regards, Mike.


By beth on 22/12/17 at 3:20pm

I think that WalkLakes are happy enough for members to express their opinions on this subject openly on the forum.

Absolutely.

Beth.


By ScoutScarShuffler on 22/12/17 at 6:35pm

ScoutScarShuffler

I think that WalkLakes are happy enough for members to express their opinions on this subject openly on the forum. Otherwise, they would not have invited people to do so, as they did at the end of their https://www.walklakes.co.uk/opus52526.html article, to which I had linked and responded when starting this thread.

I respect the fact that everyone is entitled to their own individual opinions on such matters, even where those opinions are diametrically opposed to mine. However, I genuinely do feel that this particular planning application could become another "pivotal" moment in the history of LDNP, (and indeed, all of Britain's National Parks), should it be approved.

I can think of no better way of phrasing my feelings on the subject than I had done above, when I said: - "I urge everyone who loves the Lake District to search their conscience and decide whether a profit driven commercial scheme is worth more than the values that our National Parks stand for".

I would just like to mention, since you say that you have signed an online petition, that online petitions and posting on websites (even as we are doing here!), whilst they certainly give a feel for the status of general opinion, won't affect the outcome. Only by emailing/writing to the LDNPA will people's opinions actually be given due consideration: - Those email addresses are: - and Cc to - - Attention of Kevin Richards, Case Officer.

Please folks, make sure that you have your voice properly heard. Quite literally, the future of LDNP as we know it might depend on it! One final comment - Since writing my post above, I understand that the closing date for comments has been extended to 12th January.

Regards, Mike.

Hi Mike I agree with all your comments and yes I have sent the appropriate letters to all the necessary parties, and I am aware that most things online such as Petitions etc are of little regard but they are good for spreading a message.

I feel that online is a very good medium for drawing peoples attention to situations and keeping issues fresh in peoples minds, after all in our modern society there is a percentage of people that only learn or read of things on line.

With something as diabolical as the potential Thirlmere Zipwires I strongly feel that all avenues should be utilised to make the voices of those that object heard, in the hope that the appropriate authorities are made to take notice.

This from this weeks Westmorland Gazette http://www.thewestmorlandgazette.co.uk/news/15601590.First_images_depicting_proposed_Thirlmere_zip_wires_released/

This from Grough :- https://www.grough.co.uk/magazine/2017/12/21/national-trust-and-actor-caroline-quentin-latest-opponents-of-thirlmere-zipwires

This Page that has up to date information http://zipoff.org/

Merry Christmas to you all and lets hope for a Zip wire free new year :)

P.S. the online Petition can found here https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/say-no-to-zip-wires-across-thirlmere?source=facebook-share-button&time=1511534681 ;)


By ScoutScarShuffler on 23/12/17 at 8:21pm (last edited 30/12/17 at 10:22pm)

For anybody wishing to write to the planning authority but not sure how to go about it, there is a template with guidance on what you might like to include, as well as a link to examples of what are considered to be some of the main planning issues, this can all be found by following the link below :-

https://www.friendsofthelakedistrict.org.uk/Pages/FAQs/Site/thirlmere/Category/write-to-the-planning-authority

This from Grough :- https://www.grough.co.uk/magazine/2017/ ... e-zipwires

This Page that has up to date information http://zipoff.org/

lets all strive for a Zip wire free new year :)

P.S. the online Petition can found here https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/ ... 1511534681 ;) ScoutScarShuffler


By Lancashire Lad on 27/12/17 at 4:51pm

The impetus seems to have stalled slightly over Christmas, but hopefully people will pick up the gauntlet once again and not let this profit driven commercial nonsense of a plan gain any more ground.

The Sandford principle - (I make no apology for citing it here once again. ;) ): - "If it appears that there is a conflict between conservation and development, the National Park Authority shall attach greater weight to the purpose of conserving and enhancing the natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage of the area".

From what I've read, all of the organisations and "household names" below, are unified in being against the wholly inappropriate zip-wire proposal: -

**British Mountaineering Council Campaign for National Parks The Facebook Group: - "ZipOffThirlmere" (with more than 1250 followers). The Fell and Rock Climbing Club of the English Lake District Friends of the Lake District Grough Magazine KE Adventure Travel - Travel Agency, Keswick. Icicle, Windermere (technical mountain store) St. Johns and Castlerigg & Wythburn Parish Council The Great Outdoors Magazine The National Trust The Open Spaces Society Thirlmere History Society Wainwright Society WalkLakes!!

Alan Hinkes - Mountaineer, (Only Brit thus far to climb all 14 of earths 8000m peaks). Andy Beck - Artist, (Author of the Wainwrights in Colour etc.). Caroline Quentin - Actress, (President of Campaign for National Parks). Chris Townsend - (Outdoor writer and photographer). Terry Abraham - Videographer, (Life of a Mountain - Scafell Pike, etc.). **

Hopefully there will be many more joining that list!

Two articles I've seen recently are of particular interest, and definitely well worth reading: -

http://www.tgomagazine.co.uk/news/roger ... thirlmere/ and: - https://www.ukclimbing.com/articles/page.php?id=9998

Regards, Mike.


By Lancashire Lad on 30/12/17 at 2:20pm

The John Muir Trust is also now amongst the organisations to advise their stance on the zip-wire proposal.

They have issued this statement: - QUOTE Thirlmere zip wire Given our interest in the Lake District in relation to Glenridding we have been assessing the impacts of the proposed Thirlmere zip wire application and have concluded we will object. We are now preparing our objection. (An extension for representations has been extended to 12 January 2018). UNQUOTE

The statement can be seen at: - https://www.johnmuirtrust.org/latest/ne ... e-december

Regards, Mike.


By SheepFarmer on 31/12/17 at 1:06pm

First off thank you to Mike/Lancashire Lad for all his postings & links on this subject to allow us all easy access to peoples views out there. I would like to add to the list with an excellent walk report (http://www.wainwrightwalking.co.uk/thir ... -zip-wire/) with pics done by Brenda & John whos site it is.

Having looked through some of the plans what strikes me among other things is the size of the gantries with one being 15.8m wide by 7.2m high or roughly 52ft by 24ft in old money, also the sound reports suggest that up close the mechanical sound of the carriages will be louder than a passing car & that doesn't take account of people screaming.


By ScoutScarShuffler on 31/12/17 at 8:10pm

The John Muir trust statement can also be viewed here :- http://zipoff.org/

Along with some interesting articles from the successful campaign against the Glenridding zip wires

Such as visitor comments which as said many of the comments apply to Thirlmere :- http://www.helvellyn.com/nozip-quotes.html

And this from an open meeting in Glennriding http://www.helvellyn.com/ZipWireOpen%20 ... 20v1.0.pdf

It is well worth reading Tony Stephensons latest post on http://zipoff.org/ (posted today 31/12/17) he also promises more information tomorrow.

https://www.friendsofthelakedistrict.or ... -authority

This from Grough :- https://www.grough.co.uk/magazine/2017/ ... e-zipwires

This Page that has up to date information http://zipoff.org/

To be honest it would appear that there was much more momentum against the Glenridding zip, than there is against the Thirlmere operation which appears to be on a larger scale.

Be aware that the date for objections in respect of united utilities retrospective planning permission for the `upgrade of the forest track leading up to the return launch site of zip wires is the 5th of January So come on folks lets strive for a Zip wire free new year, after all World heritage must mean something surely :)

P.S. the online Petition can found here :- https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/ ... 1511534681 ;)


By TallPaul on 31/12/17 at 9:31pm

Be aware that the date for objections in respect of united utilities retrospective planning permission for the `upgrade of the forest track leading up to the return launch site of zip wires is the 5th of January

Ahem, it's actually 12th January, as confirmed by "IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT THIS APPLICATION UPDATE 3 - 20/12/2017" which is currently the last document on the application page.


By ScoutScarShuffler on 01/01/18 at 3:52pm (last edited 01/01/18 at 4:49pm)

TallPaul wrote:

ScoutScarShuffler wrote:

Be aware that the date for objections in respect of united utilities retrospective planning permission for the upgrade of the forest track leading up to the return launch site of zip wiresis the 5th of January

Ahem, it's actually 12th January, as confirmed by "IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT THIS APPLICATION UPDATE 3 - 20/12/2017" which is currently the last document on the application page.

Sorry Tall Paul but my reference in red was in relation to United Utilities application for retrospective Planning permission for work that they have already carried out on the Forest track that leads up to the return Launch site around Fisher Crag More details here :- http://www.timesandstar.co.uk/news/Thir ... bac53b3-ds

Which as far as I can tell is separate to the application submitted By Tree Top Treks the deadline for which is of course is the 12/1/ 2018.

Of course if I am wrong I apologise and stand to be corrected, however if folk want to submit comments to the planning authorities then it is better done sooner than later.

As I have said before up to date developments and links to various notable notes of objection can be found here :-

http://zipoff.org/

Check out the extremely poignant poem By Stuart Atkinson entitled 'WIRED' which can be found here:-

https://astropoetry.wordpress.com/2017/12/31/wired/

and the online Petition Here :- https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/ ... 1511534681 ;)

Thanks for the prompt and thanks for an excellent site


By Lancashire Lad on 01/01/18 at 4:06pm

. . . I would like to add to the list with an excellent walk report (http://www.wainwrightwalking.co.uk/thir ... -zip-wire/) with pics done by Brenda & John whos site it is . . .

Some good photos there that show the extent of what's been done - without obtaining the requisite planning permission! to the Fisher Crag path.

Here's another letter of objection that Mike Turner, the rest of TreeTop Trek's owners, and all those of like mind who suggest that this zip-wire application is beneficial for the LDNP would do well to read: -

https://kingsleyjones.com/2018/01/01/wi ... adventure/

Regards, Mike.


By Lancashire Lad on 02/01/18 at 3:33pm

Further to the recent appearance of additional documentation on the planning application webpage: - http://www.lakedistrict.gov.uk/swiftlg/ ... /2017/2298

I've sent another email of objection to the zip-wire proposals. - I have copied that email below.

Keep the pressure on, everyone. This proposal is not about bringing further prosperity to the LDNP, it is about lining the pockets of TreeTop Trek's owners. There are only 10 more days left to object. Please don't be amongst those who don't bother. The integrity, character, heritage, future conservation and enhancement of the LDNP might depend on it!

02/01/18 To:

Planning Reference: 7/2017/2298 (Major full application) - RE: Objections to Zip-wire facilty at proposed Thirlmere Activity Hub

Sirs,

Treetop Trek have recently made additional planning documentation information available, within the latter stages before closure date for comments on this planning application. This late availability of relevant and important documentation will undoubtedly affect the numbers of objections which would otherwise be submitted regarding same.

From that additional documentation I would draw your attention to the following statements - written by the planning applicant's own team, and which by definition, are wholly contrary to the requirements for conserving and enhancing the Lake District National Park.

I would further remind the planning committee of their legal duty under Sandford Principle, translated into law in 1995 by the The Environment Act 1995 s62 (1) (2), which states: - "In exercising or performing any functions in relation to, or so as to affect, land in a National Park, any relevant authority shall have regard to the purposes specified in subsection (1) of section five of this Act and, if it appears that there is a conflict between those purposes, shall attach greater weight to the purpose of conserving and enhancing the natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage of the area comprised in the National Park."

From TreeTop Trek's own planning application documentation: - (Any emboldening, capitalization, or underlining of the quoted text below, added by myself in order to draw attention to that text).

Additional information received 20 Dec 2017 - Landscape and visual appraisal addendum: - From section 2 - Appraisal of Landscape Effects 2.1 "There would be an effect on the tranquillity of the area, as visitors take part in the zip line experience . . . ." From section 2.5 - Land use and Land Management 2.5.2 [b]". . . the overall effects on landscape character would be moderate ADVERSE."[/b] From section 2.6 - Effects on landscape character. 2.6.1 "The magnitude of identified effects within the area of Local Character Area of Distinction 23: Thirlmere are primarily limited to the low-lying landscape within approximately 0.5km of the site. The impact on the character from the transportation and people movement and the arrival of visitors would be medium" And: - "From these localised locations there would be a noticeable effect within the context of the current tranquil character. It would result in partial alteration to the key features of the baseline character. The overall level of landscape effect would be moderate ADVERSE". From section 2.8 - Lake District National Park 2.8.1 The movement of walkers and cyclists within the National Park is a transient activity which is common throughout the locality. The movement of people, in particular that of the 4x4 vehicle along the forest tracks, is assessed as medium magnitude. Although the routes are commonly used by other vehicles for management of land and habitats the frequency of the use is much less than that proposed. The overall level of effects is assessed as moderate ADVERSE. The proposals have a noticeable effect within the wider context of the area, in particular the influence of vehicular travel to gain access to the point of arrival. From section 3 Appraisal of Visual Effects - 3.3 Highway Transport Network 3.3.2 - Viewpoint 2 - A591 Highway " . . . The overall level of effect is assessed as slight ADVERSE." 3.3.4 - Unnamed Road " . . . the overall level of effect is assessed as slight ADVERSE". From section 3.6 - 3.6 Footpaths and Bridleways 3.6.1 Viewpoint 1 - Station Coppice " . . . . The visual effect is assessed as slight ADVERSE . . . ". 3.6.3 Viewpoint 4 - Helvellyn " . . . . The movement activity would result in small change to views the impact is assessed as slight ADVERSE." 3.6.5 Viewpoint 7 - Raven Crag " . . . . The overall level of effect is assessed as slight ADVERSE." 3.6.7 Viewpoint 6 - Great Howe " . . . . The overall level of effect is assessed as slight ADVERSE." From section 3.7 - Recreational 3.7.1 Viewpoint 3 - Armboth Car Park " . . . . The visual effect is appraised as slight ADVERSE . . . ".

By definition, the word "adverse" means: - "having a negative or harmful effect on something". Can it be any clearer than that?

It is perfectly obvious from the above, and when considered with the previously available planning application documentation and drawings, that these proposals fall outwith the guidelines and legal obligations pertaining to an acceptable level of management of the Lake District National Park.

I maintain that these zip-wire proposals will be detrimental to the landscape and character of Thirlmere Valley, that they will prove to be a dangerous distraction to those travelling on the A591 main artery between Windermere and Keswick, and that they will be detrimental to the peaceful and tranquil enjoyment of the many outdoor activities currently available to the thousands of existing visitors to that area. If this application were to be approved, then it would undoubtedly set precedent for future large scale commercial development schemes within the LDNP - which would then be much harder to reject.

When one considers that a previous planning application for a zip-wire facility at Honister Mine area was refused, when that immediate area is of largely industrial quarry type landscape (similar to the existing "ZipWorld" facility in Wales), it would be an utter outrage, and gross dereliction of duty by all those concerned, were this Thirlmere zip-wire planning application to be granted.

Yours faithfully . . . .


By Lancashire Lad on 04/01/18 at 5:26pm

Just seen this email response from Gill Haigh, Cumbria Tourism's Managing Director. (it's on the ZipOff Thirlmere site https://twitter.com/ZipOffThirlmere/sta ... 9419876354 ).

If you cannot read the text in the image below, it can be found via the above link, where the jpeg image of the reply can be clicked on, and is then enlarged to a more easily readable text size. Actually, it's well worth viewing the linked page, because directly below Ms Haigh's reply, is the original (very well written) email to which she has replied, and, as the writer suggests: - QUOTE "It's interesting to see what she doesn't answer, rather than what she does..." UNQUOTE.

QUOTE "this is a board position . . . " UNQUOTE - Oh well, that's just fine and dandy then. Just forget the small fact that we're talking about a National Park and World Heritage Site here. Obviously, all that's of concern is creating QUOTE "UK's Adventure Capital" UNQUOTE, at all costs, regardless of any detriment to the LDNP.

If the people that run Cumbria Tourism, i.e. "the Executive Board", are prepared to make decisions that encourage running roughshod over the legal obligations required in managing a National Park, i.e. the Sandford Principle, then in my opinion they are not fit to hold those no doubt lucrative board positions.

Absolutely disgusted!

Regards, Mike.


By ScoutScarShuffler on 04/01/18 at 7:31pm

Oh dear :- https://www.cumbriacrack.com/2018/01/04/cumbria-chamber-commerce-backs-thirlmere-zip-wire/

Local news tonight say`s that Honister Slatemine are re- submitting there application for a Zipwire Oh dear.Oh Dear.

But reason prevailed here:- http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-cumbria-42566870

Of course always worth checking this site out daily :- http://zipoff.org/ for up to date info on Thirlmere Zip


By Lancashire Lad on 04/01/18 at 8:38pm

Oh dear :- https://www.cumbriacrack.com/2018/01/04/cumbria-chamber-commerce-backs-thirlmere-zip-wire/ . . . .

There's a lengthier version of (Chief Executive, Cumbria Chamber of Commerce), Rob Johnston's statement here: - http://www.cumbriachamberofcommerce.co. ... e-zipwire/

I've already posted a comment to his statement, but it is currently awaiting moderation, so may not be able to be read as yet.

If that's the case, I've copied my comment below: -

Your comment is awaiting moderation

An open request to Rob Johnston - Chief Executive, Cumbria Chamber of Commerce.

Mr Johnston, How do you reconcile supporting a planning application which proposes to run roughshod over the very ethics of acceptable management for conservation and enhancement of a National Park?

Within TreeTop Trek's own Appraisal of Landscape Effects, available for viewing on the planning applications website, there are at least ten acknowledgements that the zip-wire proposal will create "adverse" effect on the locality. There are further admissions within that document, that the scheme will affect the tranquillity of the area, and impact upon the character of the area.

By definition, the word "adverse" means: - "having a negative or harmful effect on something". Can it be any clearer than that?

Your argument that "The landscape of Thirlmere is already hugely altered by man . . ." is an argument by fallacy. The Thirlmere reservoir construction occurred over fifty years before the creation of the LDNP, and the area has now had over 100 years to mellow and blend in with surrounding landscape.

The fact that Thirlmere reservoir was man-made, does not in any way at all exclude that area from the relevant protection that National Park legislation provides.

I would remind both yourself, and the planning committee of the legal duty under Sandford Principle, translated into law in 1995 by the The Environment Act 1995 s62 (1) (2), which states: - "In exercising or performing any functions in relation to, or so as to affect, land in a National Park, any relevant authority shall have regard to the purposes specified in subsection (1) of section five of this Act and, if it appears that there is a conflict between those purposes, shall attach greater weight to the purpose of conserving and enhancing the natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage of the area comprised in the National Park."

To be clear, it is not permitted by law, to construct major commercial developments within the National Park when they clearly fall outwith the Sandford Principle! Again, I ask you, how do you reconcile your support for a scheme which will break that law?


By ScoutScarShuffler on 05/01/18 at 8:35pm

Would this be the next stage at Thirlmere as well as wales ? :-

https://www.zipworld.co.uk/hotel

http://zipoff.org/


By Lancashire Lad on 06/01/18 at 5:31pm (last edited 08/01/18 at 10:46am)

Re my last post, (above), i.e. response to Rob Johnston/Cumbria Chamber of Commerce.

On checking back with that webpage today, my comment has disappeared altogether. I can no longer see it, (even in its waiting to be moderator approved mode), and can only assume that the moderator has deleted it. Perhaps my response had struck a nerve? - Maybe Rob Johnston, as spokesperson for Cumbria Chamber of Commerce doesn't have a credible answer to my question? :roll:

EDIT: - Checking back again this morning, (10:45am 08/01/18), and my response has now appeared on the site, along with several others. Although, it has been moderated to remove references to Rob Johnston - who quoted the comments to which I was responding!

PS: Besides the Sandford Principle, I've just been made aware of another set of criteria which should be legally enforceable with respect to controlling major developments within a national park - "The Silkin Test". i.e.: - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silkin_Test

I haven't heard that being mentioned thus far in the Thirlmere zip-wire debate, but it might be another string to the bow that can be cited in order to strengthen the case against!

Regards, Mike.


By ScoutScarShuffler on 06/01/18 at 8:51pm

I have seen mention of two legal issues, which for obvious reasons are not being elaborated on.

Old news now but the Ramblers have issued a statement :- http://www.ramblers.org.uk/great-britai ... osals.aspx

But better than that I notice from the Zip off Twitter live feed that Cumbria CC has objected to the Zip wires and they highlight misleading elements in the planning application well worth checking the live Twitter feed out.

Would this be the next stage at Thirlmere as well as wales ? :-

https://www.zipworld.co.uk/hotel

If that was the case I fail to see how that would benefit local BBs, hotels, cafe`s, restaurants and retail outlets etc Make your objections known folks Time is running out you only have until NEXT FRIDAY 12/1/2018


By Lancashire Lad on 07/01/18 at 6:27pm

. . . But better than that I notice from the Zip off Twitter live feed that Cumbria CC has objected to the Zip wires and they highlight misleading elements in the planning application well worth checking the live Twitter feed out. . . . .

Nice to know that Cumbria CC (Cumbria County Council) has joined the fight!

Just a pity that the other Cumbria CC (Cumbria Chamber of Commerce) aren't as enlightened, having stated that they are all for it. :roll:
Commerce over conservation, (of landscape/wildlife/heritage/etc. etc.), at all costs. - Destroy the very character of the National Park? - So what? - Lets have more big business! :roll: :roll: :roll:

Regards, Mike.


By Lancashire Lad on 18/01/18 at 9:30pm

Now that the official closing date for comments has passed, the response correspondence from numerous organisations has been made available to be viewed on the LDNP planning application web-page: - http://www.lakedistrict.gov.uk/swiftlg/ ... /2017/2298

Having spent some time reading these various letters, I have to say, quite frankly, I am thoroughly disgusted, that in supporting this application, several of these large and influential organisations have no regard whatsoever for the core principles and values that are absolutely critical to the protection and future sustainability of the Lake District National Park.

They trot out clichéd phrases such as: -

What is common amongst these organisations, is that they are all commerce & business orientated. All they are interested in is promoting money making schemes for business people. - And it is quite obvious that they give no regard to whether such money grubbing schemes are in direct conflict with existing National Park legislation.

That this specific application, if approved, would be the thin end of the wedge, is blindingly obvious. The issue of precedent will have been challenged, and seen to fall on the side of commerce over the values that National Parks stand for.

Our National Parks are finite areas of national importance. They are not Theme Parks. Theme Park attractions can be constructed almost anywhere. The beauty and heritage of our National Parks - the very reasons why so many people visit them, can only be maintained if major commercial development is not allowed to take precedence.

I am somewhat dismayed to discover that a total of less than three thousand emails and letters of objection were received. That so few made the effort to spend a few minutes to "officially object" is deeply troubling. One would have thought that with 18 million visitors a year, the special place that is the Lake District National Park, would have deserved much more support!

To anyone reading this who didn't object, yes, the official closing date for comments has passed. However, the planning authority are still obliged to take account of all correspondence received on this application until the date of the LDNPA's Development Control Committee meeting - which I understand will be in late February. So - If you haven't yet done so there is still time to object!

I've said it before, and I say it again: - "I urge everyone who loves the Lake District to search their conscience and decide whether a profit driven commercial scheme is worth more than the values that our National Parks stand for".

Regards, Mike.


By ScoutScarShuffler on 18/01/18 at 9:51pm

The folk that protect us are not happy about the idea of Zip wires. The MOD has objected :- http://zipoff.org/

The full MOD letter can be read on the Zip off Thirlmere Twitter feed.


By ScoutScarShuffler on 21/01/18 at 6:09pm

Interesting article in yesterdays Guardian :-

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jan/21/why-is-britain-so-cavalier-with-its-glorious-world-heritage?CMP=share_btn_tw


By ScoutScarShuffler on 23/01/18 at 1:24pm (last edited 23/01/18 at 8:28pm)

Planners announce delay in hearing until 7th march :-

http://www.lakedistrict.gov.uk/swiftlg/MediaTemp/68365-269846.01.18.pdf

3476 emails and letters of objection and 163 emails and letters in support :D


By TallPaul on 23/01/18 at 1:28pm

Funnily enough I was just reading that document while writing a blog post for tomorrow but it says 7th March not 17th for the meeting ...


By ScoutScarShuffler on 23/01/18 at 1:35pm

Thanks Paul edited forgot to add they also received a petition with 13535 signatures against Zip wires


By Lancashire Lad on 25/01/18 at 4:50pm

The proposed zip-wires were debated in the House of Lords today!

See: - https://www.facebook.com/zipoffThirlmer ... 6410368670 for highlights video.

The full discussions can (currently) be found by visiting this page: - http://parliamentlive.tv/event/index/27 ... 7f6ad29496 and scrolling back through the timeline to 11:31-16 - Lord Greaves, and clicking on that time-link and those directly following it.

Notable that Lord Tebbit, when certain childish idiots of the house finally let him speak! - (at about 11:35-30 am), emphasises the danger to low flying military aircraft as per MOD objection.

Personally, I cannot but agree with the sentiment of the comment on the particular post from Zip-Off-Thirlmere: - "Well I'm not sure we can go much higher than the House of Lords. The world is watching and waiting for the correct decision. Throw this utterly ridiculous and self serving proposal in the garbage bin where it belongs. . . !

Regards, Mike.


By Lancashire Lad on 06/02/18 at 6:46pm

The following organisations are amongst the many who have voiced strong objections to this application. In perusing some of the vast numbers of objections, it almost beggars belief that Defra, the organisation providing primary funding for the LDNPA, is not willing to step in, stop this application dead in its tracks, prevent further wastage of public and charitable funding, and put an end to the fears and concerns of the many thousands of people who love and respect the Lake District National Park.

This quote is taken directly from the LDNPA website: - "Funding Britain's national parks are funded directly by Government grant from Defra. We receive no funding from council tax or other local taxes. We get most of our money from the Government grant from Defra. About a third of our income comes from trading activities such as car parking, planning application fees and sales at Information Centres".

DEFRA states, (letter ref. TO2018/00016 - dated 11th January 2018), that it "does not intervene with the day to day running" (of national parks), and that "it is for the NPA itself to address complaints about its own conduct".

If this application does get approved in the face of the serious and numerous objections - which include "severe risk" to users of the highway (A591), "significant impact" upon vital military training, and undoubted contravention of the Sandford Principle - enshrined in law within the Environment Act 1995, It would be maladministration of the highest order, by those responsible for its approval.

All of the letters of objection are well worth reading (The entirety of the specific planning application documentation, drawings, and response letters may be found here: - http://www.lakedistrict.gov.uk/swiftlg/ ... /2017/2298

However, the response letter by Friends of The Lake District: - http://www.lakedistrict.gov.uk/swiftlg/ ... 269102.pdf is perhaps the most erudite and well written response of the lot. (I confess that I do not always agree with what FoLD have to say, but in this instance, I agree wholeheartedly with every word!).

Cumbria County Council has objected to the application. Their response letter, (http://www.lakedistrict.gov.uk/swiftlg/ ... heModule=1), includes : - "We therefore have no alternative but to recommend refusal as the proposal is likely to increase the risk and danger and inconvenience to all users of the highway. Note - This risk is considered severe due to the speed and classification of the roads".

The Ministry of Defence has objected to the application. Their response letter, (http://www.lakedistrict.gov.uk/swiftlg/ ... heModule=1), includes : - "Therefore, this application could cause a significant hazard and it would significantly impact upon vital military training conducted in this area. The MOD therefore objects to this application".

Allerdale Parish Council has objected to the application. Their response letter, (http://www.lakedistrict.gov.uk/swiftlg/ ... 269147.pdf ), includes : - "The Council resolved to object strongly to the proposed Thirlmere zipwire, chiefly on the grounds of the Sandford Principle, which states that where conservation of the environment and public enjoyment come into irreconcilable conflict, conservation interest should take priority".

Buttermere Parish Council has objected to the application. Their response letter, (http://www.lakedistrict.gov.uk/swiftlg/ ... 269546.pdf ), includes : - "other commercial companies within the Lake District area will see it as a reason to further push against the boundaries that have made the Lake District and other National Parks the enjoyable environments they are".

Keswick Town Council has objected to the application. Their response letter, (http://www.lakedistrict.gov.uk/swiftlg/ ... 270352.pdf ), includes : - "Councillors were fearful of setting a precedent and concerned about additional visitor facilities which may be provided subsequently, e.g. cafe etc.".

Mungrisdale Parish Council has objected to the application. Their response letter, (http://www.lakedistrict.gov.uk/swiftlg/ ... 267323.pdf ), includes : - "If this project were to go ahead, a precedent would be set for further developments in other Valleys".

St John's Castlerigg & Wythburn Parish Council has objected to the application. Their response letter, (http://www.lakedistrict.gov.uk/swiftlg/ ... 267648.pdf ), includes : - "That the proposal is contrary to the objectives of a National Park as laid out in the Environment Act 1995 - To conserve & enhance the national beauty, wildlife & cultural heritage of the National Park and; To promote opportunities for the understanding and enjoyment of the special qualities of the National Park by the public".

Regards, Mike.


By TallPaul on 20/02/18 at 4:35pm

You've probably heard already but Treetop Trek have withdrawn their application. Mike Turner, their managing director, specifically cited the MoD's objection as the main reason.

We predicted in a recent blog post that this could be the nail in the coffin. It's nice to be right for once.


By Lancashire Lad on 20/02/18 at 6:35pm

A victory for common sense. - And a case of Mike Turner trying to save face if you ask me!

According to an article on ITV Border: - http://www.itv.com/news/border/update/2 ... -scrapped/ QUOTE Mike Turner, Managing Director of Treetop Trek Ltd said: We made it clear from the beginning of this process that we would not propose a scheme that was not supported by the MOD. To date we have received two contradictory communications with the MOD; one supporting the scheme and the other opposing the scheme. The MOD's internal investigation into Thirlmere and into what they would be happy with at Thirlmere is ongoing and unlikely to be resolved within the next eight weeks, so on that basis we are withdrawing the application. We would like to sincerely thank all those who have supported us during this process. Their positivity has been hugely appreciated."

Both of the MOD's response letters are available to view amongst the planning application documentation.

The first one, whilst imposing some MOD requirements, did not specifically "object" to the application. But it certainly did not "support" the application either! That letter was written in June 2017, long before the planning documentation & drawings had been fully finalised and submitted. Additional planning documentation was still being received by LDNPA as late as December 20th 2017.

The MOD's second letter, (dated 18th January 2018), obviously written after they had had sight of the additional planning documentation & drawings, is absolutely categoric in its objection to the application.

The monumental opposition to this scheme was never about Nimbyism, as some are trying to make out. It was about what is, and what is not, appropriate as a commercial venture within open countryside in a National Park.

Likewise, it was not about being against zipwires per se. It was simply about being against zipwires when those specific zipwires are being proposed in a wholly inappropriate location.

We can have zipwires anywhere - we only have one Lake District national Park, and it needs to be managed with a degree of respect and sympathy for its inherent qualities that will see it sustained and enhanced - for future generations.

Regards, Mike.


By ScoutScarShuffler on 20/02/18 at 7:49pm

Happy days :) :) :) :)

Let`s not forget United Utilities Retrospective planning application though.


By SheepFarmer on 21/02/18 at 3:33pm

Yes it's happy days but I'm sure I read on one of the numerous pages out there that one note of caution should be sounded as the application was withdrawn not refused & we don't know if the applicant will have had been told the result of the planning officers recomendation of refusal (https://www.friendsofthelakedistrict.or ... -statement) before they withdrew. Plus Tree Top Trek will have known they are better off withdrawing than getting a refusal if they want to rehash things & try againe.


By TallPaul on 21/02/18 at 4:45pm

I've just been reading the planning officer's draft recommendation. It's at least good to know that they would have recommended rejecting the application.

The one that surprised me among the organisations for and against was the Mountain Training Trust & Plas y Brenin National Mountain Sports Centre who I naively assumed would object, but no they supported the application - see 3.35 (just below us ;) ).


By Lancashire Lad on 21/02/18 at 5:45pm

I am more than convinced that "the applicant" would have already had sight of the draft document, and that would be the real reason why the application was withdrawn.

The excuse made about withdrawing because the MOD are still investigating what would be acceptable in Thirlmere, is, in my humble opinion, nothing more than a smokescreen to save face.

The draft document contains innumerable confirmations that the proposal was assessed as having "substantial adverse / severe adverse" effect on the locality - under all manner of circumstances.

I would hope that Mike Turner, if he has any moral conscience whatsoever, would now, having had a similar reception to this proposal to the one he got at Glenridding, would finally get it - that a very large number of local communities and residents, local councils, businesses, a wide variety of outdoor related organisations, and not least, visitors to the Lake District, do not accept that this type of large scale profit driven commercial venture is wanted or acceptable in unspoiled open countryside locations within a national park.

The LDNP is subject to legal requirement to conserve and enhance it under Sandford Principle, translated into law in 1995 by the The Environment Act 1995 s62 (1) (2), which states: - "In exercising or performing any functions in relation to, or so as to affect, land in a National Park, any relevant authority shall have regard to the purposes specified in subsection (1) of section five of this Act and, if it appears that there is a conflict between those purposes, shall attach greater weight to the purpose of conserving and enhancing the natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage of the area comprised in the National Park."

It's about time that certain members of the LDNP's executive committee - not least Graham Leafe (CEO), who openly supported this application, realised that, and worked for the good of the national park, and not for the good of private companies who are only wanting to get a piece of the action, and take whatever they can get - even when that is blatantly at the expense of conserving and enhancing the national park!

Regards, Mike.


By ScoutScarShuffler on 02/03/18 at 8:56pm

Latest statement from united utilities :- https://www.grough.co.uk/magazine/2018/03/01/united-utilities-rules-out-any-further-thirlmere-zipwire-application



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