North Derbyshire Traveller site approved despite residents' concerns

Council chiefs have given the green light for a new Traveller site in north Derbyshire despite a number of concerns raised by residents.

By Tim Paget
Tuesday, 21st December 2021, 11:47 am

Approval has been granted to turn part of a plantation, off Pilsley Road, Danesmoor, into five Traveller pitches.

The site is bordered by an existing Traveller site and the northern part of the Erewash Valley railway line between Chesterfield and Nottingham.

Planning documents submitted to North East Derbyshire District Council say the location is currently used for ‘equestrian purposes’.

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Council chiefs have given the green light for a new Traveller site close to this area of Danesmoor.

A design and access statement said: “Each pitch will accommodate one static caravan and one touring caravan. Drainage will be to a septic tank.

"Access would be taken from the existing access off Pilsley Road.”

Documents say the site is needed to meet the agreed requirements of the Travelling community.

"In North East Derbyshire, the assessed need is for 15 additional pitches between 2014 and 2034, of which six were to be provided between 2014 and 2019.” the applicant said.

“Since the start date of the Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Assessment in 2014, I can find no record of permissions having been granted for Traveller sites.

"Seven applications for sites of between one and 12 pitches have been the subject of recent planning refusals.

"Currently, there are no other outstanding permissions for Traveller sites in the District, and consequently the requirement for a five-year supply is not being met.

"This proposal will substantially address that need.”

However, Pilsley Parish Council and nearby homeowners raised a number of concerns to planning officers.

The parish council said it was worried about flood risk to the pitches from the nearby River Rother and detailed reports about the impact on ‘local wildlife and ecology’ had not been provided by developers.

Resident Paul Heaton said he would prefer all development to take place on brownfield sites instead.

“Consideration must be given to noise and light pollution to neighbouring properties," he added.

“I am concerned as to the suitability of the Pilsley Road to accommodate large caravans and associated vans towing and hence turning into or leaving the site.”

Sarah Brown said: “The positioning of this site will cause considerable disruption to a very picturesque part of the countryside including trees, hedges and watercourses.”

North East Derbyshire District Council conditionally approved the plans on December 16.

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