Chapel housing estate plan rejected

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A plan to build 208 houses on farmland in Chapel-en-le-Frith has been rejected by High Peak Borough Council.

The proposed development would have encompassed seven hectares of land to the west of Long Lane.

‘The people of Chapel didn’t want the town expanding.’

A total of 58 letters of objection to the plan were received by the council, citing the development’s environmental impact and increased traffic congestion it would cause, among many others.

High Peak borough councillor Stewart Young said: “The planning officers produced a good report and the plan was turned down on that basis.

“The development was not in keeping with the neighbourhood plan and the access to the site would have been very difficult.”

Coun Young went on to say that the neighbourhood plan, adopted in July after a referendum in which 96 per cent of Chapel residents supported it, was a big factor in the development being rejected.

He also said that a petition, signed by over 400 members of the public in Chapel left the planning committee in no doubt of local sentiment on the issue.

“It was obvious that the people of Chapel didn’t want the town expanding into the great open spaces around it,” he said.

“There has been a great deal of local opposition to the plan - people were coming up to me when I was shopping or in the pub to complain about it.”

He went on to say that one of the developer’s biggest mistakes was to base their calculations on housing need on just the town of Chapel.

In fact, when surrounding areas such as Chinley were taken into account their claims that the area was in dire need of new houses were found to be unfounded.

The council must now await news from the developer about whether they intend to appeal the decision to planning inspectors based in London.