This is as much a push for publicity and support as anything; the Lake District has been on the UK's Tentative List for Inclusion on UNESCO's list of World Heritage Sites since 2001. It is a fascinating example of a 'cultural landscape' though. The claim that it has 'Outstanding Universal Value' (the key criterion for designation) rests on four themes: its rural landscapes and farming traditions; the prominence of the Lakes in the development of the Picturesque aesthetic; it's claim to be the cradle of British Romanticism; and the landscape conservation movement.
There's a long time until the 38th session of the World Heritage Committee, in June 2014, when the next inscriptions on the list will be made. Plenty of time for publicity and lobbying.