This is an archived press release
Thursday 16 June 2011
A new chair has been elected for the Peak District National Park Authority.
Councillor Tony Favell, who lives in Edale and represents High Peak Borough Council on the authority, will be in post until the annual meeting in July when the role comes up for election again.
Councillor Favell steps up to the role having previously been deputy chair of the authority since June last year.
He replaces Narendra Bajaria, CBE, who is leaving the authority on 31 March after completing his 10-year term of office as a Secretary of State member.
Narendra had been chair of the authority since July 2007, having previously been chair of its planning committee for three years.
He said: “During my time the authority has faced key challenges on a number of issues, such as the need to deliver more affordable housing for local people, unlawful minerals quarrying at Backdale, the proposal for an A628 bypass and the need to carry out moorland restoration to help tackle the impact of climate change.
“In dealing with all these issues the huge challenge has been to meet the needs and expectations of local people, while also recognising that the Peak District is an asset for the whole nation.
“I’m grateful for all the support I have received from local people - who I enjoyed meeting in the regular community visits I made - as well as members, staff and partners.”
Narendra joined the authority in April 2001, after retiring the previous year from his role as head of planning, highways and transport at Sheffield City Council.
He also served as chair of the English National Park Authorities’ Association (ENPAA) between July 2009 and July 2010.
Narendra was awarded a CBE by the Queen in June 2009 for services to the Peak District National Park and rural and urban planning.
To mark his retirement from the authority Narendra was presented with a picture of Stanage Edge, the place that first inspired his passion for the Peak District National Park during a visit more than 40 years ago.
At today’s authority meeting Geoff Nickolds was elected as deputy chair of the authority. Christopher Pennell was elected chair of the new audit, resources and performance committee, with Councillor Garry Purdy becoming vice chair. All posts will be up for election again in July.
The committee has been introduced to improve the efficiency of the authority, reduce costs and give members more time to engage with local communities. It replaces both the services and audit and performance committees.
The authority’s members are made up of:
- Six parish members, who are parish councillors or chairs of parish meetings, who represent people living in parishes across the national park
- 16 borough, district, city or county councillors who represent people living in communities that make up the national park area
- Eight members who are appointed by the Secretary of State to represent national interests and for their particular specialism in an area, such as cultural heritage, biodiversity or planning issues.