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COMMENTS INVITED ON LEES CROSS AND ENDCLIFFE QUARRIES

This is an archived press release

Tuesday 3 February 2004

3 February 2004

COMMENTS INVITED ON LEES CROSS AND ENDCLIFFE QUARRIES

Over the next four weeks the Peak District National Park Authority is inviting interested parties to comment on proposals to reopen quarries at Stanton Lees near Matlock.

Stancliffe Stone Ltd wants to restart operations at the quarries, which have not been worked for several decades. The Peak District National Park Authority’s planning control committee may need to consider the issue as early as the end of March.

This week the Authority launched formal consultations with parish, district and county councils, along with English Nature and English Heritage. The Authority is also seeking legal advice to clarify the current status of the site.

All interested parties can lodge their comments - in writing by mid-March - with the Planning Service, Peak District National Park Authority, Aldern House, Baslow Road, Bakewell DE45 1AE.

Copies of the plans have been sent to consultees including Stanton-in-Peak Parish Council, and are available for inspection at Aldern House.

The quarries are already covered by a planning permission, granted by the Government in 1952. The Authority’s role will be to determine a scheme of conditions for the quarries.

Chair of the National Park Authority's planning control committee, Councillor John Bull said: "This is a very sensitive site and the proposal to reopen the quarries is controversial. We have previously stated that we do not want them worked again due to their proximity to Stanton Lees and the scheduled ancient monument on Stanton Moor - however, we must examine the company’s proposals and take into account all of the consultation responses.

"There is also question over the status of the site – whether it should be considered dormant or active – and over the coming weeks we are seeking legal advice to clarify this point.

"Whatever the outcome of this legal issue people should be aware that it is not within our power to refuse permission for the quarries to reopen, as the site already has permission. Our role will be to approve a set of modified conditions for working the site in an appropriate way."

· Planning officers met yesterday with a group of eco-protesters who discussed their concerns and handed over a petition opposing the reworking of the quarries.

This is an archived press release

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