Chesterfield livery yard plan sparks concern

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Residents are urging council planners to say nay to proposals to create a livery yard near to a conservation area.

Applicant Peter Lister wants to build 13 new stables on a site which has ten existing stables as part of plans for a floodlit complex on Manor Farm, Church Lane North, Old Whittington.

The proposal has been branded “an illuminated horse carbuncle” by Jason Jacques, who lives on the narrow lane, and has raised his concerns with Chesterfield MP Toby Perkins.

In a letter to Chesterfield Borough Council, which will consider the application, Mr Jacques described the plan as the greatest loss of character to the village since the destruction of the manor house, which was located on the land of the proposed development.

He is concerned about the impact the livery yard would have on the bat-friendly conservation area. “The illuminated horse carbuncle would naturally have a significant effect on the local bat population by deterring bats from using their natural usual foraging areas,” he said.

Another resident hit out at the plan to erect four 8m-tall lighting poles, commenting: “It would feel like a football pitch, not a quiet area.”

Access to the proposed liveery yard is in front of St Bartholmew’s Church and the parochial church council has raised concerns about parking. Writing on behalf of the church council, the Rev Jo Morris said: “The 23 stable livery yard will add to an already difficult situation. At the moment, there is at best parking for four cars visiting the parish church for services, funerals and wedding. In addition, parking spaces are required for many who visit the churchyard to remember loved ones.

“The area in front of the lychgate is required to be kept clear for emergency vehicles and the road is marked as such.” The applicant has declined to comment. The target date for the application to be decided is September 10, although this could be extended depending on whether the application is to be determined by an officer or planning committee.