Building a Local Nature Partnership in Shropshire
A ground-breaking new partnership between Shropshire Council and Telford and Wrekin Council has been awarded formal status as a Local Nature Partnership (LNP).
The new partnership is one of 41 formal LNPs across England and will work to safeguard nature and to enhance the benefits biodiversity provides for economic growth and community well-being across Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin.
During a funded development period, between January and June 2012, the partnership attracted the support of business representatives, health officials, senior planners, politicians and environmental experts, and as a result the partnership was formally awarded its Local Nature Partnership status by Government ministers on 17 July 2012.
Ministers expect LNPs to work closely with Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) and Health and Well-being Boards to enhance the economic and social benefits that are provided by a healthy natural environment.
Key services provided to communities by the natural environment include good quality local food, clean water and air, recreation and flood prevention, and the partnership will focus on enhancing and protecting these services. The new LNP will be strongly influenced by local priorities, ensuring the true value of our natural environment has a prominent place in local decision-making and delivering greater benefits for communities.
Cecilia Motley, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member with responsibility for rural affairs, carbon reduction and sustainability, said:
“The natural environment is one of our greatest assets and the LNP provides a unique opportunity to release the value of the environment into decision-making, whilst unlocking benefits to the economy and local communities. I look forward to working with the LNP to deliver their vision of secure functioning, sustainable and resilient ecosystems to sustain the health, well-being and livelihoods of the people of Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin.”
Hilda Rhodes, Telford & Wrekin Council’s Cabinet member with responsibility for transport and community protection, said:
“The LNP is an innovative partnership, bringing together organisations from a range of sectors to realise the full potential of our natural environment. Partnership working is integral to delivering better outcomes for our communities and the economy. The LNP will be an influential body, capable of driving real change for the benefit of this generation and the next.”
The aim of the Local Nature Partnership is to:
- Co-ordinate and streamline existing activities
- Ensure local organisations are working towards a common goal
- Raise awareness about the natural environment and its health benefits
- Raise awareness about the value of the natural environment to communities and the local economy.