Whaley Bridge has completed the first step towards obtaining a neighbourhood plan, which will enable the community to have a say on where development takes place.
The parish, which includes Furness Vale, has now officially been designated as a neighbourhood area by High Peak Borough Council and the Peak District National Park Authority.
The next phase involves creating a draft plan by October 2014. The process will culminate with a referendum in October 2015.
Chairman of the town council Cllr Martin Thomas welcomed the news, saying: “Our vision is to ensure that over the next 15 years Whaley Bridge remains a viable and prosperous place to live and work, creating a good balance between places set aside for living accommodation, employment, retail, agriculture and leisure.
“Although we cannot grant areas protection from development, we will seek to identify those specific places enjoyed by residents for their amenity value, used for recreation and which provide sanctuary for wildlife. We will work in conformity to the emerging local plan, and build upon it where we see the need. In particular, we envisage creating a regeneration masterplan for the area around the canal and Bingswood site.”