Sir Chris Bonington will lead a celebratory Lakeland walk

Sir Chris Bonington will lead a celebratory Lakeland walk

Everest summiteer Sir Chris Bonington will lead a walk later this year to celebrate the 75th anniversary of a campaigning group.

The Lake District walk is one of a series of events to mark the founding in 1935 of the Campaign for National Parks.

Members of the public are being invited to join Sir Chris on the walk in May and can register to take part. The campaign body is urging walkers to get sponsorship to raise cash for their cause.

The official anniversary of the CNP, which was originally set up to call for greater access to some of the best landscapes in England and Wales, is on 14 July. The organisation continues to campaign for protection for national parks and has organised a series of activities throughout the year and is encouraging the public to join them under the banner of Get into National Parks.

The CNP president, broadcaster and adventurer Ben Fogle, said: “National parks are our ‘green’ national treasures, and it’s vital that they remain so.

“At CNP we want the nation to appreciate the parks’ wide-open spaces, wildness and natural beauty, to enjoy their culture and warm hospitality and to understand the threats that they face and what we can all do to look after them.

“They are vulnerable landscapes and there is no better way to protect them than by getting out and enjoying them.”

Ben Fogle with his dog Inca

Ben Fogle with his dog Inca

The CNP will be hosting a reception at the House of Lords to secure a public show of support for national parks from Government.

Later this month, the shortlist of nominees for the inaugural Park Protector Award will be announced and in March Ben Fogle will join Mosaic young champions as they undertake a series of challenges to promote national parks to a new generation of supporters.

October will see more than 300 of the Mosaic community champions come together to celebrate their achievements.

CNP chief executive Helen Jackson added:  “Campaigning will remain at the heart of what we do and CNP will continue to push national parks up the political agenda to demonstrate their role and importance to wider society, highlighting the vital role that they play in conserving wildlife, promoting healthier lifestyles and building sustainable communities.

“But at the same time we simply want the nation to enjoy national parks and understand their relevance to 21st century society so that we can instil a greater responsibility in people to look after these landscapes for years to come.”

Anyone interested in joining the Sir Chris Bonington walk is asked to contact Liz Wall on 020 7924 4077 ext 223 or email her.

Further details are on the Campaign for National Parks website.

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