Public opinion in Whaley Bridge gets an early test of last autumn’s ‘brownfield before greenfield’ controversy over future housing plans for the town. The first significant planning application since the passionate debate in October 2012 has been considered by High Peak Borough Council planners.
The application by Colin Dunn is to build 13-14 properties on a narrow site known as Gisborne Yard, off Old Road and Caldene Terrace (an unadopted road) and very close to the railway line. Planners are recommending approval for outline planning permission, with a three year cap on work starting.
At present, the site includes a stock car assembly operation and a number of ‘fairly unattractive’ industrial buildings, formerly used as an engineering works and heavy goods vehicle workshop.
There have been letters of support on the grounds that the site is an eyesore at the moment. There is a shortage of starter homes in Whaley Bridge and the plans present an opportunity to extend the linear walk along the old Cromford and High Peak railway line. Whaley Bridge Amenity Society gives the thumbs up: the plans will remove HGVs from Old Road, they say, and allow access improvements to Caldene Terrace. Whaley Bridge Town Council welcomed the change of use to residential, requested the route of the old railway be safeguarded as well access to the filled-in bridge under the Buxton branch line to allow for future excavation, and requested the road be brought up to adoptable standard and adequate parking provided.
Letters of concern highlight an increase of traffic, with poor access; privacy issues, with the new houses ‘overlooking gardens on Old Road’; the height of proposed houses.
HOGS YARD PLANS: High Peak Developments Ltd are seeking to extend the time limit on starting work on plans already approved for the site alongside the Tesco supermarket. Planners recommend approval, with conditions.
In addition an application has just been filed for outline planning permission for three stand-alone retail units on the land around the Tesco garage. This was discussed at the Whaley Bridge Town Council meeting on 11th July. The Town Council gave qualified support to the application; with concern being expressed about the number of car parking spaces and the road exit and entrances. Its comments will be passed to the Borough planners.
WINE BAR TURNED DOWN: Planners rejected an application for a restaurant and wine bar at 39 Buxton Road, with accommodation above. The site is opposite the Uniting Church. The Town Council had objected on the grounds of over development on the site. Objections were also recorded by County Highways.