Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (c. 69)
1981 c. 69 - continued

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Management agreements with owners and occupiers of land.












1967 c. 10.

        39.—(1)  A relevant authority may, for the purpose of conserving or enhancing the natural beauty or amenity of any land which is both in the countryside and within their area or promoting its enjoyment by the public, make an agreement (in this section referred to as a "management agreement") with any person having an interest in the land with respect to the management of the land during a specified term or without limitation of the duration of the agreement.

    (2)  Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1), a management agreement—

     (a)  may impose on the person having an interest in the land restrictions as respects the method of cultivating the land, its use for agricultural purposes or the exercise of rights over the land and may impose obligations on that person to carry out works or agricultural or forestry operations or do other things on the land ;
     (b)  may confer on the relevant authority power to carry out works for the purpose of performing their functions under the 1949 Act and the 1968 Act; and
     (c)  may contain such incidental and consequential provisions (including provisions for the making of payments by either party to the other) as appear to the relevant authority to be necessary or expedient for the purposes of the agreement

    (3)  The provisions of a management agreement with any person interested in the land shall, unless the agreement otherwise provides, be binding on persons deriving title under or from that person and be enforceable by the relevant authority against those persons accordingly.

    (4)  Schedule 2 to the Forestry Act 1967 (power for tenant for life and others to enter into forestry dedication covenants) shall apply to management agreements as it applies to forestry dedication covenants.

    (5)  In this section "the relevant authority" means—

     (a)  as respects land in a National Park, the county planning authority;
     (b)  as respects land in Greater London, the Greater London Council or the London borough council; and
     (c)  as respects any other land, the local planning authority.

    (6)  The powers conferred by this section on a relevant authority shall be in addition to and not in derogation of any powers conferred on such an authority by or under any enactment.

Experimental schemes.

        40.  For subsections (1) and (2) of section 4 of the 1968 Act (under which the Countryside Commission may submit for the Secretary of State's approval proposals for experimental schemes in relation to particular areas and are required to carry out proposals approved by him) there shall be substituted the following subsection—

      "(1) The Commission, after consultation with such local authorities and other bodies as appear to the Commission to have an interest, may from time to time make and carry out or promote the carrying out of any experimental scheme designed to facilitate the enjoyment of the countryside, or to conserve or enhance its natural beauty or amenity, which—
       (a)   in relation to the countryside generally or to any particular area involves the development or application of new methods, concepts or techniques, or the application or further development of existing methods, concepts or techniques; and
       (b)   is designed to illustrate the appropriateness of the scheme in question for the countryside generally o r for any particular area."

Duties of agriculture Ministers with respect to the countryside.

1944 c. 28.






1911 c. 49.



1970 c. 40.
















1967 c. 86.

        41.—(1)  The advice for the giving of which free of charge the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food and the Secretary of State are required by section 1(1) of the Agriculture (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1944 to make provision through such organisation as they consider appropriate shall include—

     (a)  advice to persons carrying on agricultural businesses on the conservation and enhancement of the natural beauty and amenity of the countryside;
     (b)  advice to such persons on diversification into other enterprises of benefit to the rural economy; and
     (c)  advice to government departments and other bodies exercising statutory functions on the promotion and furtherance of such diversification as is mentioned in
    paragraph (6).

    (2)  In the exercise of his general duty under section 4(2) of the Small Landholders (Scotland) Act 1911 of promoting the interests of agriculture and other rural industries, and without prejudice to the generality of that duty, the Secretary of State shall make provision, through such organisation as he considers appropriate, for the giving of such advice as is mentioned in paragraphs (a), (b) and (c) of subsection (1).

    (3)  Where an. application for a grant under a scheme made under section 29 of the Agriculture Act 1970 (farm capital grants) is made as respects expenditure incurred or to be incurred for the purposes of activities on land which is in a National Park or an area specified for the purposes of this subsection by the Ministers, the appropriate Minister—

     (a)  shall, so far as may be consistent with the purposes of the scheme and the said section 29. so exercise his functions thereunder as to further the conservation and enhancement of the natural beauty and amenity of the countryside and to promote its enjoyment by the public; and
     (b)  where the relevant authority have objected to the making of the grant on the ground that the activities in question have had or will have an adverse effect on the natural beauty or amenity of the countryside or its enjoyment by the public, shall not make the grant except after considering the objection and, in the case of land in England, after consulting with the Secretary of State;

and this subsection shall have effect, in its application to Scotland, as if references to the amenity of the countryside were omitted.

    (4)  Where, in consequence of an objection by the relevant authority, an application for a grant as respects expenditure to be incurred is refused on the ground that the activities in question will have such an effect as is mentioned in subsection (3)(b), the relevant authority shall, within three months of their receiving notice of the appropriate Minister's decision, offer to enter into, in the terms of a draft submitted to the applicant, a management agreement—

     (a)  imposing restrictions as respects those activities; and
     (b)  providing for the making by them of payments to the applicant.

    (5)  In this section—

    "agricultural business" and "the appropriate Minister" have the same meanings as in the said section 29;
     "management agreement"—
       (a)   in relation to England and Wales , means an agreement under section 39;
       (b)   in relation to Scotland , means an agreement under section 49 A of the Countryside (Scotland) Act 1967;
      "the relevant authority"—
       (a)  in relation to England and Wales , has the same meaning as in section 39;
       (b)  in relation to Scotland , means the authority exercising district planning functions.

    (6)  Subsection (1) extends only to England and Wales and subsection (2) extends only to Scotland .

National Parks

Notification of agricultural operations on moor and heath in National Parks.

        42.—(1)  The Ministers may, if satisfied that it is expedient to do so, by order apply subsection (2) to any land which is comprised in a National Park and which appears to them to consist of or include moor or heath.

    (2)  Subject to subsection (3), no person shall—

     (a)  by ploughing or otherwise convert into agricultural land any land to which this subsection applies and which is moor or heath which has not been agricultural land at any time within the preceding 20 years; or
     (b)  carry out on any such land any other agricultural operation or any forestry operation which (in either case) appears to the Ministers to be likely to affect its character or appearance and is specified in the order applying this subsection to that land.

    (3)  Subsection (2) shall not apply in relation to any operation carried out, or caused or permitted to be carried out, by the owner or occupier of the land if—

     (a)  one of them has. after the coming into force of the order, given the county planning authority written notice of a proposal to carry out the operation, specifying its nature and the land on which it is proposed to carry it out; and
     (b)  one of the conditions specified in subsection (4) is satisfied.

    (4)  The said conditions are—

     (a)  that fee county planning authority have given their consent to the carrying out of the operation;
     (b)  where that authority have neither given nor refused their consent, that three months have expired from the giving of the notice; and
     (c)  where that authority have refused their consent, that twelve months have expired from the giving of the notice.

    (5)  A person who, without reasonable excuse, contravenes subsection (2) shall be liable—

     (a)  on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum;
     (b)  on conviction on indictment, to a fine.

    (6)  Where the county planning authority are given notice under this section in respect of any land, the authority shall forthwith send copies of the notice to the Ministers, the Nature Conservancy Council and the Countryside Commission.

    (7)  In considering for the purposes of this section whether land has been agricultural land within the preceding 20 years, no account shall be taken of any conversion of the land into agricultural land which was unlawful under the provisions of this section or section 14 of the 1968 Act.

    (8)  An order under this section shall be made by statutory instrument which shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.

    (9)  The said section 14 (which is superseded by this section) shall cease to have effect; but this section shall have effect as if any order under that section in force immediately before the coming into force of this section had been made under this section.

Maps of National Parks showing certain areas of moor or heath.

        43.—(1)  Every county planning authority whose area comprises the whole or any part of a National Park shall —

     (a)  before the expiration of the period of two years beginning with the commencement date, prepare a map of the Park or the part thereof showing any areas of moor or heath the natural beauty of which it is, in the opinion of the authority, particularly important to conserve; and
     (b)  at such intervals thereafter as they think fit (but not less than once in any year), review the particulars contained in the map and make such revisions thereof (if any) as may be requisite.

    (2)  The authority shall cause a map prepared or revised in pursuance of subsection (1) to be printed, and shall cause copies thereof to be put on sale to the public at such price as the authority may determine.

Grants and loans for purposes of National Parks.

        44.(1)  Without prejudice to section 11 of the 1949 Act {general powers of local planning authorities in relation to National Parks), a county planning authority may give financial assistance by way of grant or loan, or partly in one way and partly in the other, to any person in respect of expenditure incurred by him in doing anything which in the opinion of the authority is conducive to the attainment, in any National Park the whole or part of which is comprised in that authority's area, of any of the following purposes, that is to say, the conservation and enhancement of the natural beauty of that Park and the promotion of its enjoyment by the public.

    (2)  On making a grant or loan under this section a county planning authority may impose such conditions as they think fit, including (in the case of a grant) conditions for repayment in specified circumstances.

    (3)  A county planning authority shall so exercise their powers under subsection (2) as to ensure that any person receiving a grant or loan under this section in respect of premises to which the public are to be admitted, whether on payment or otherwise, shall, in the means of access both to and within the premises, and in the parking facilities and sanitary conveniences to be available (if any), make provision, insofar as it is in the circumstances both practicable and reasonable, for the needs of members of the public visiting the premises who are disabled.

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