The Committee considered the proposed changes to the current planning system as set out in the Government’s Consultation Document published on 6 August 2020.
The four main proposals with the consultation document were set out at paragraph 3.1 of the report and a summary of the proposals together with the possible implications for High Peak was appended to the report.
The importance of providing a cross party response to the consultation copied to the local MP was stressed by members. Members of the committee endorsed the points set out within the appendix and made the following comments
· Draw attention to the proximity of High Peak to the national park
· the geography of High Peak and the limited land supply on which to build
· traditional heritage of our communities
· affordable housing – removal of smaller sites, emphasis on starter homes as opposed to differences in tenure
· unfairness of judging High Peak on numbers
· local control, local knowledge, small mixed communities – proposals do not suit smaller communities
· affordable housing – house prices are high, people may struggle to buy homes in the High Peak
· should be a unique policy for rural areas
· unclear how national parks would be dealt with and do requirements on housing requirements apply
· housing requirement for High Peak – constrained by geography and topography – will inevitable start to encroach on key views etc – problem with applying standard methodology
· concern regarding rural areas such as the High Peak used for small to medium developments and affordable units will be in city centres
That the report be noted and the above comments be included within the Council’s response to the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government before the end of the consultation period on 1 October 2020.