Faster extraction approved at Peak District quarry

This is an archived press release

Monday 16 February 2009

16 February 2009

Faster extraction approved at Peak District quarry

The Peak District National Park Authority has approved an application for faster extraction at New Pilhough Quarry near Stanton in Peak.

Operator Blockstone applied to take out 24,000 tonnes of gritstone a year for two years, up by a third on the 18,000 tonnes a year previously allowed.

Planning officers advised that this could mean the available stone would be exhausted quicker, shortening the life of the site.

It would not extend the quarry, and was unlikely to increase the total amount taken out until planning permission runs out in 2022. Nor would it increase the permitted lorry traffic, limited to 10 movements a day (five in and five out), Monday to Friday.

In exchange the company offered to continue its freeze on operations at the more environmentally-sensitive site of Stanton Moor Quarry until the end of 2010.

Planning committee members were concerned about potential road damage, but were told highways authorities had sufficient power to remedy this. They also questioned the environmental impact, but were told it would not be significant enough to merit a refusal.

Planning vice-chair Anne Ashe, who chaired the committee, said: “This application is short-term and preferable to using Stanton Moor Quarry, which would be more harmful to sensitive wildlife and archaeological sites. This two-year period should allow sufficient time for the preparation of an application that could include a permanent solution for the Stanton Moor Quarry site.”

Four local residents spoke against the proposal. They expressed the views of Stanton in Peak Parish Council, Stanton Against Destruction of the Environment and the Stanton Lees Action Group.

They said the extra tonnage would be damaging and excessive, and that earlier exhaustion of the quarry would hasten an application to extend it. In their view a freeze on Stanton Moor Quarry was not a fair exchange.

The Authority refused an application in 2005 to increase output from 18,000 tonnes a year to 28,000 tonnes a year until 2022, and another application in 2007 for a haul-road. In the same year the company withdrew an application to extend New Pilhough and give up its Stanton Moor Quarry permission.

Gritstone from New Pilhough is used for building stone.

This is an archived press release

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