This is an archived press release
Wednesday 18 June 2014
A new liaison group is to bring together local residents and quarry companies to help manage and protect one of the Peak District National Park's best loved landscapes.
The Stanton Moor Minerals Liaison Group will gather mineral operators, parish councils, community groups and landowners to increase understanding and dialogue between them.
It will meet three times a year, administered by the National Park Authority, but operating at arm's length through an impartial, independent chair. The first meeting will be on June 30.
Professor Tony Crook CBE AcSS has agreed to chair the group. Professor Crook is Emeritus Professor of Town & Regional Planning and former Senior Pro-Vice Chancellor of The University of Sheffield; he lives in the Peak District.
Professor Crook has served as a trustee or non-executive director of over 40 organisations during his career, and researched, taught and advised overseas. He is chair emeritus of the Board of Trustees of Shelter, deputy chair of the Orbit Housing Group, a director of a regional house-builder, a trustee of the Coalfields Regeneration Trust, a council member of the Academy of Social Sciences, a member of the Royal Town Planning Institute Board of Trustees, and a member of the Chartered Institute of Housing Influence Board. His current research and published work is into the private rented sector and affordable housing. He was created CBE in the 2014 New Year Honours for his services to housing policy and the governance of charities.
Stanton Moor has a complex planning history including permissions for mineral working given by central government in the 1950s. Since 2000 the National Park Authority adopted the Stanton Moor Principles which introduced the idea of ending mineral working in the central area of the moor with a view to allowing some existing sites on the edges of the moor to be extended, to reduce the overall impact of quarrying on the special qualities of the moor.
Much of Stanton Moor is open moorland, designated as a Scheduled Ancient Monument for its bronze age archaeology including the Nine Ladies stone circle. The area is very popular with walkers.
Councillor Lesley Roberts, chair of the National Park Authority's planning committee said: "People who live near, own or make their living from Stanton Moor care passionately – for different reasons – about its future.
"The approved mineral working is very contentious for parts of the local community – which leads to anger and frustration. We hope that their being part of the Stanton Moor Minerals Liaison Group will help alleviate this by improving communications between everyone involved outside the formal planning process."
Representatives from Stanton in Peak Parish Council, Birchover Parish Council, Rowsley Parish Council, Stanton Against the Destruction of our Environment, Stanton Lees Action Group, Friends of the Peak District, The Thornhill Settlement, Stanton Estate, Haddon Estate, Block Stone Ltd and Stancliffe Stone Ltd, are invited to be part of the Liaison Group.
The group will not have decision making powers and will not affect the Authority's responsibility to carry out its statutory planning function.
Councillor Roberts said: "We are very pleased to welcome Professor Tony Crook to chair the Stanton Moor Liaison Group – his wealth of experience in planning, as an outstanding social scientist and contributor to public policy means he will be a very capable chair."
Councillor Paul Morris chair of Stanton in Peak parish council said: "The setting up of this Liaison Group is most welcome. It will provide a platform for information interchange that should reduce the rumours and misunderstandings circulating. In addition it will provide a forum for local people to express concerns about the cumulative effects of noise and traffic brought about by quarry activities."
Picture caption: Professor Tony Crook CBE is to chair the new Stanton Moor Minerals Liaison Group