§ Mr. Harry Greenway
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what steps he is taking to safeguard playing fields: and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Moynihan
Local authorities are generally best placed to make judgments on land use and are primarily responsible for making such decisions in their own area. In exceptional circumstances the Secretary of State for the Environment may choose to intervene but only where issues of more than local importance are involved. Nevertheless, the Government have urged local authorities to take into account the needs of the wider community and to consult local sport and recreation interests before allowing recreational land to be developed.