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Belper Town Council decided at its meeting in April 2017 to take a more active part in the preparation of the Belper Neighbourhood Plan.
At the Steering Group meeting of 16th May 2017, the group unanimously decided to wind up the group. This requires a minimum of 28 days notice, consequently there will be a meeting of the group on 20th June with the sole item on the agenda a decision to wind up the group.
This meeting will be followed immediately by the inaugural meeting of the Belper Neighbourhood Plan Working Group. The Working Group will be a sub-
Belper Neighbourhood Plan
The Localism Act 2011 was passed to encourage decisions to be made by local people instead of everything being decided by remote Borough or District Councils. The act introduced Community Rights and Neighbourhood Planning.
In April 2014, Belper Town Council decided Belper should have its own Neighbourhood Plan covering the whole of the civil parish of Belper. This includes Belper, Belper Lane End, Milford, Makeney, Broadholme, Blackbrook, Farnah Green etc.
Much of the parish is within the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site and this will have a significant impact on the plan for Belper.
We aim to have the plan completed ready for a local referendum of all electors in the parish in October 2017.
World Heritage Status and what it means for Belper
All land in England & Wales has a legal status. The Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group were told by Derek Stafford, Head of AVBC’s Planning Department that World Heritage Status is the highest status of all.
World Heritage Status can only be granted by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) upon application by the national Government for the site.
All planning applications in a designated WHS have to be advised to the WHS Steering group who will consider the impact the planning application has on the WHS. If their opinion is not respected by AVBC or the person making the planning application, the issue will go to a Public Inquiry. A Government Inspector will be appointed to run the inquiry and his/her decision will be made in line with the National Planning Policy Framework and is effectively final. AVBC and the applicant have to comply with the finding of the Inquiry, whatever the decision is.
A World Heritage Site can be put on UNESCO’s Endangered WHS list if a planning application is passed that compromises the Outstanding Universal Value of a World Heritage Status of the site. This will cause a major embarrassment to AVBC, and cause a loss of tourism to the site and money into the local and national economy. Many visitors to World Heritage Sites come from abroad.
Click here to view Derelict Belper a video by John Boam. Although the video is the opinion of one person, from a survey of 2000 households in Belper, the views expressed are also held by many residents of Belper, the Borough Council and H.M. Government
AVBC’s Local Plan 2006 agrees with the views expressed in the video Paragraph 6.60 says “…Although much derelict land in the Borough has been reclaimed, pockets of dereliction remain and there is a need to try and secure the remediation of these areas.”