NPPF & unintended consequences & ‘Moor grouses’ ….

It seems that it isn’t just conservationists who had and continue to have concerns about the National Planning Policy Framework. 

We are all of us asked to sign epetitions and recently I was alerted to another, and I now share with you an interesting bit of the background to the appeal circulated by a ‘campaigning PC’ (Parish Clerk) who wrote:

You will no doubt be familiar with the rapidly growing number of opportunistic housing development proposals being submitted in many rural communities throughout the country.  You  will also be aware of the enormous difficulty in resisting inappropriate   planning applications without a core strategy in place or an identified 5 year supply of developable land.  Even if applications are refused by the Local Planning Authority, there is a likelihood that they will be allowed at   appeal as a result of the presumption of sustainable development.

 As you may know the MP for Stratford  on Avon, Mr Nadhim Zahawi, has spoken out strongly against the damage being  done to rural communities.  The Daily Telegraph of 9th January reported  him as saying that loopholes in the guidelines are allowing developers to   “undermine the Government’s good intentions to deliver bottom-up planning and   much needed housing” and that the “physical harm” being inflicted on the   countryside could become “the defining legacy of this  Government”.
Unfortunately, whilst Mr Zahawi has a  great deal support for his opinions, both regionally and at Westminster, the   Government is not listening and seems determined to press ahead with its   current policy despite the widespread irreversible damage that will ensue.
We believe that Mr Zahawi’s stance should be given public support and that with three simple amendments to the planning policy the Government’s objective of building more homes can be  achieved without the creation of a damaging legacy. 
With this in mind we have lodged an  e-petition on the No 10 website and are inviting you and your councillors to  support it.
For more detail as to the particular aspects of the petition see “Amend the NPPF now before irreversible damage is caused to our communities”
So, might this see a challenge to the drive to concrete the countryside, might it see sense prevail in floodplains?  It was always going to be contentious, heralded as local people making local decisions.  Lest we forget that when local decisions go against developers they go to appeal, yet if decisions go against local wishes they have no right of appeal.  Yes, they can consider Judicial Review and to do that they have to raise thousands of pounds to challenge and only then if the process was flawed.  Democracy?
Of petitions nearing their deadlines and requiring a bit more support to ensure that the Government at least ‘discuss’ the proposal in Parliament, can I also ask you to consider signing John Armitage’s petition:  Licencing of upland grouse moors and gamekeepers.
Red Grouse TM
Red Grouse in the Peak District, copyright Tim Melling (with permission).
It seems to be enjoying a last minute burst thanks to ‘celebrity bloggers’ like Mark Avery.  The Forum featured it previously but in case you missed that plea then can you help it to secure the 10,000 signatures needed by 27 February 2014?   Currently it stands at 8,461 ….

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