§ Mr. Gordon Prentice
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will consider introducing legislation to allow local planning authorities to designate football grounds as metropolitan open space or green belt.
§ Mr. Baldry
Metropolitan open land is found only in London and has the same status as green belt. Under existing legislation, it is open to local planning authorities in their development plans to designate land, including playing fields, as open space or green belt where the area concerned meets certain criteria. In respect of playing fields, the criteria are set out in paragraphs 41 to 44 of planning policy guidance note 17. In respect of green belts, the criteria are set out in paragraphs seven to 11 of planning policy guidance note 2.