This is an archived press release
Thursday 6 March 2008
6 March 2008
Minister to hear latest on quarrying issues at Longstone Edge
DEFRA minister Jonathan Shaw is to meet with senior officials from the Peak District National Park Authority to discuss the latest developments about quarrying on Longstone Edge.
Authority chair Narendra Bajaria and chief executive Jim Dixon will meet with the minister to discuss the long-running action to protect the sensitive countryside around Backdale and Wager’s Flat on Longstone Edge, near Bakewell.
The meeting comes as the Peak District National Park Authority and the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government are waiting to hear the outcome of a High Court appeal hearing held in London last week.
The appeal by landowner Bleaklow Industries Ltd was against a planning inspector’s decision to uphold an enforcement notice to stop what he considered to be unlawful quarrying at Backdale.
At the hearing the judge listened to legal submissions from the landowner and the operator and also from the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government and the Peak District National Park Authority.
He has reserved his judgment but has already indicated that he does not accept the Planning Inspector's decision, which was given after a 10-day public inquiry held at Calver Village Hall in February 2007.
The judge also indicated he did not agree with either the Inspector's or the National Park Authority's interpretation of the original 1952 planning permission.
He will aim to give a formal judgment by March 17.
Narendra Bajaria, chair of the Peak District National Park Authority, said: “We are waiting to hear the formal judgment from the High Court hearing before deciding on our next move as we do everything possible to protect this important landscape.
“In the meantime we are taking every opportunity to raise awareness of this issue with the Government. A senior official from the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) visited Longstone Edge today to see the situation for himself.
“I am also pleased that DEFRA minister Jonathan Shaw has agreed to meet with us again later this month so we can update him on the various legal cases concerning quarrying at Longstone Edge and discuss the best ways of trying to resolve this issue.”
Members of the public can find out more about the background to legal cases concerning quarrying at Longstone Edge by visiting the Peak District National Park Authority website at www.peakdistrict.gov.uk/longstone-edge