Local people are being invited to have their say on the Derbyshire Dales’ draft Local Plan as a six-week public consultation starts this week.
It’s the most significant step to date in the preparation of a Plan designed to guide local development in the Dales up to the year 2033.
A total of 6,015 homes are earmarked for the district in the draft document, with 32 residential sites provisionally allocated – 19 in the central area and 14 in the southern area.
Councillors approved the content of the draft last month before formally approving the six-week consultation, which starts on 7 April.
It will include an online survey, exhibitions and public meetings in Wirksworth, Ashbourne and Matlock and a workshop for parish councils.
Councillors will meet again in June to consider public feedback before agreeing a Submission Plan, which will go out for further public consultation before being submitted to Government before the end of the year.
Public exhibitions will take place at the District Council’s Wirksworth Leisure Centre from 7-14 April, Ashbourne Leisure Centre 14-21 April and Matlock’s Imperial Rooms 21-28 April, with public meetings (7-9pm) at Wirksworth Leisure Centre on 11 April, Ashbourne’s Elim Church on 19 April and Matlock Highfields School Sport Hall on 25 April.
A District Council spokesperson said:
“The draft Local Plan is a very important document as it sets out the overall vision, objectives and policies for the future development of those parts of the Derbyshire Dales that lie outside the Peak District National Park up to 2033.
“We have already listened to what communities, local businesses and residents have said about the key issues that need to be tackled, and where new development should take place. This is another chance for local people to help shape the future of the Derbyshire Dales.”
As well as controlling and guiding development in the Derbyshire Dales, the Plan will protect the special environmental qualities of the district. An earlier version was withdrawn at the end of 2014 after a Government Inspector ruled that the 4,400 new homes target was 2,000 short of what was needed.
Since then officers have updated the Local Plan evidence base, appealing for new sites to be brought forward, and the District Council consulted local people on key issues at the end of last year.
In January and February draft Local Plan policies and a new housing target figure were agreed, and provisional sites were allocated.
In the central area there are five sites in Darley Dale, three in Matlock, two in Wirksworth, two in South Darley, two in Tansley and one in Cromford, Middleton by Wirksworth, Northwood and Darley Bridge.
Southern area sites are four in Ashbourne, four in Brailsford, three in Doveridge and three in Hulland Ward.
- Of the 6,015 new homes that could be allocated in the Local Plan, around 2,000 have already been built or have the benefit of planning permission. It is anticipated a further 400 new homes will be built by 2033 in parts of the Derbyshire Dales that lie inside the Peak District National Park, where the District Council does not control development.
- So the designated development sites, once approved, will need to accommodate the majority of around 3,600 new homes over the next 17 years to keep up with a predicted population growth of 8.4% and economic growth that could see around 1,700 new jobs delivered across the district.