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Authority thanks community for Longstone Edge support

This is an archived press release

Friday 28 March 2008

28 March 2008

Authority thanks community for Longstone Edge support

The Peak District National Park Authority has expressed its gratitude to community and environmental groups for their continued support in its action to stop alleged harmful quarrying on Longstone Edge.

Community representatives who spoke at a meeting of the full Authority today (March 28), were united in supporting the Authority’s drive to apply pressure through all means possible, and in pledging to continue their own lobbying.

The Save Longstone Edge Group, Friends of the Peak District, Great Longstone Parish Council and West Derbyshire MP Rt Hon Patrick McLoughlin all spoke at the meeting.

Authority chair Narendra Bajaria responded: “We very much share your genuine concern about the impact of these operations on Longstone Edge and on the local community.

“We are also grateful for your support in working with us to try to achieve the end we all want: a permanent solution to the problems on Longstone Edge. Our united approach can only emphasise its significance.”

The Authority is now expected to hold a special meeting on April 18 to consider its next steps following a High Court hearing in February. This dealt with an appeal by landowner Bleaklow Industries Ltd against the outcome of last year’s public inquiry into operations at the Backdale site on Longstone Edge, near Bakewell.

The High Court judge has allowed the appeal against the Planning Inspector’s decision to uphold the Authority’s enforcement action. He has also given an interpretation of the 1952 planning permission.

But the Authority is still awaiting the written transcript of the judge’s decision, and until it has had time to scrutinise the details, it cannot make a formal decision on its next steps.

The transcript is expected towards the end of next week (beginning March 31).  The Authority will then have 21 days to decide whether to seek permission to appeal against the High Court judgment.

Meanwhile the chair and senior officers have met Defra minister Jonathan Shaw to keep him fully informed on the current position.

Mr Bajaria said: “The minister was made aware of the seriousness of the situation and he asked me to convey his concerns to the Authority. The meeting was constructive and we agreed that Defra and the Authority would work together to find a permanent solution.”

For more background, go to www.peakdistrict.gov.uk/longstone-edge

This is an archived press release

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