SECTION 1: HOUSING
The Neighbourhood Plan must provide for sustainable growth, which includes provision for a minimum number of new homes in Chapel-en-le-Frith Parish. To give an indication of future growth, the Government predicts that the number of households in High Peak as a whole will grow by around 24% by 20282.
As the Vision for the Neighbourhood Plan sets out, it is extremely important to provide sufficient new homes, enabling people to buy or rent their first and subsequent homes within the Parish, as their requirements change.
Housing development can also bring benefits to the community through developers contributing to infrastructure and improvements to local services, whilst additional residents will support and help to sustain local businesses and facilities.
This Neighbourhood Plan thus provides for a minimum number of new homes to meet the needs of the local community, whilst setting out policies to ensure that development is of a high quality and, where appropriate, contributes towards the provision of local services, infrastructure and facilities.
Aims for Housing
The Neighbourhood Plan’s aims for housing are:
- To provide for a minimum number of new homes in line with national and local policy over the next 15 years, both for sale and for social housing for local people;
- To preserve the character of Chapel-en-le-Frith as a small market town, Dove Holes as the second largest settlement and other settlements as small outlying villages, with appropriate local infrastructure and service provision;
- To ensure that housing is located on the most sustainable sites that are accessible to local facilities and services;
- As far as possible to meet the expectations of local people, with high quality sustainable development, as was set out in consultation meetings and responses to Chapel Vision’s survey;
- To set out design specifications to ensure that new homes and streets are designed so that they complement and enhance existing buildings and minimise the impact on the surrounding countryside.
The Plan allocates sites for a minimum of 454 homes (outside the Peak District National Park). During the research phase 412 homes received planning consent from the Borough Council. In addition, we have provided a policy for small sites within the built-up area, and for single additional properties where required for a specific purpose within the countryside.
Whilst the plan was in preparation a further 401 homes have also received planning permission, a grand total of 813 homes, which comfortably exceeds the minimum target provided by the Borough Council, based on its preferred options plan February 2013. All of the large sites allocated in the Neighbourhood Plan were granted planning permission during 2013.
Any new housing or development within the Neighbourhood Plan area that is approved by the National Park Authority can be counted towards the housing targets for the Parish.
2 The 2008 Based Sub National Population Projections for England, published by the Office for National Statistics on 27th May 2010.
Proposed Sites for New Homes
Chapel Vision’s Housing Group analysed as many sites as possible in order to find the most sustainable sites for residential development.
The Group contacted site owners who had previously applied for planning permission and put out a press notice to encourage land owners who were interested in development to speak to the group about their proposals and the advantages and disadvantages of their site. The Group also conducted a Sustainability Appraisal of each site to assess its suitability as objectively and rigorously as possible. The main criteria were:
- Within 15 minutes’ walk of a town or large village centre, to enable residents to access facilities and services, to support those services and reduce the need for travel by car;
- Minimise the impact on conservation and biodiversity;
- Minimise the impact on the landscape.
The sites proposed gained the highest rankings for sustainability of all available sites. Importantly, these findings were very similar to the views expressed by local people in the survey of residents. Of the major sites available for development which were within walking distance of all basic services, the sites at Federal Mogul, Dorma in Whitehough and between Long Lane and the railway embankment received the most support.