The MMO have produced a 30 page document concerning the Statement of Public Participation (click here for details).
The process described is quite formal, and it is supposed to encourage public participation. That is all very well for large commercial organisations, local authorities, government agencies, and even some very large charities such as RSPB. They have the resources to do the necessary research, prepare and submit the required evidence. But individual local residents, or even smaller charities, simply do not have the resources to fully participate. Consultation fatigue is a real problem. We need to find ways of allowing genuine participation by local people.