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Hope of an end to quarry wrangle on Stanton Moor

This is an archived press release

Friday 15 June 2007

15 June 2007

Hope of an end to quarry wrangle on Stanton Moor

A quarry proposal which includes giving up rights to work dormant sites on historic Stanton Moor has been supported by the Peak District National Park Authority's planning committee.

Quarry operator Stancliffe Stone Ltd is offering to give up, without compensation, the 1952 permission to work Lees Cross and Endcliffe quarries.

The proposal also includes an extension to Dale View Quarry (further away from the moor near the village of Stanton-in-Peak), of around three hectares. The extended quarry would produce an extra 946,000 tonnes.

The relinquishing of permission to work Lees Cross and Endcliffe would be welcome as they lie close to a highly sensitive landscape on Stanton Moor, south of Bakewell. The National Park Authority fought a lengthy legal battle to maintain the quarries’ classification as dormant, which was confirmed by the Court of Appeal in 2005.

Much of the moor is designated as a Scheduled Ancient Monument, which includes the Nine Ladies Stone Circle, burial mounds and cairns. The moor also has ecological and landscape importance.

The operator would also agree to manage biodiversity habitats in neighbouring hay-meadows and woodland throughout Dale View quarry's 21-year active life. The site will be restored to agriculture and nature conservation with aftercare of 20 years.

Planning committee chair Narendra Bajaria said: “After careful assessment we consider that the extension would do less damage than the re-opening of Lees Cross and Endcliffe and therefore offers net environmental benefit to the National Park.”

But as this would be a major development and departure from the Authority's policies, the planning committee was unable to make the final decision. Its recommendation will now go before the full Authority on July 6, and if approved, to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government.

Parish councils and community groups, including Stanton-in-Peak Parish Council, Friends of the Peak District, Stanton Lees Action Group and Stanton Against Destruction of the Environment, supported the package.

Lees Cross and Endcliffe quarries have been occupied by a protestors’ encampment since 1999.

  • At the same meeting, the planning committee turned down an application made by Block Stone Ltd to build a new 1.4km haul road for lorry traffic from New Pilhough quarry, which neighbours Dale View.

The committee considered that the environmental and landscape damage of the haul road would outweigh the benefit of removing the operators’ vehicles from the highway in nearby villages.

The application received substantial objections from the local community.

Block Stone earlier withdrew an application to extend New Pilhough quarry.

This is an archived press release

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