Council to rule on controversial Bullsmoor development

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Amber Valley Borough Council will meet next week to decide the fate of a controversial new housing and factory development in Bullsmoor.

The planning board meets on Monday,May 15, and officers are recommending elected members approve proposals for 150 new houses on land behind the Vaillant boiler factory on Nottingham Road, when

Land to the rear of the Vaillant factory in Belper, on which a housing plan and factory extention has been submitted.

Land to the rear of the Vaillant factory in Belper, on which a housing plan and factory extention has been submitted.

The plans also include a major extension to the factory, car parking and vehicle access over a 10.8 hectare site.

Councillor Dan Booth ‘called in’ the application for additional council scrutiny over fears about its impact on the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site, and pressures on local amenities.

The report on the recommendation notes: “Schools and medical centres are at fully capacity and there are no dental practices accepting new NHS patients in Belper.

“The site is at risk of flooding and a huge financial contribution would be required to meet demand generated by the proposal.”

It adds: “The site has inadequate sewage systems and is development on greenfield land resulting in the loss of wildlife, hedgerows and trees.”

Those objections are shared by Pauline Latham, currently running for re-election as Mid Derbyshire MP, and more than 360 concerned residents who wrote in to the council.

The plans have also drawn criticism from heritage bosses, with a spokesman for the World Heritage Site saying: “The loss of fields for housing development will harm the outstanding universal value of the site through the loss of a significant area of its landscape setting.”

The land is 300 metres from heritage site boundaries, and planners argue there is an urgent need for new housing and economic benefits in allowing both Vaillant and the residential population to grow.

If approved, Peveril Homes Limited & Vaillant would have to pay £563,072 towards new amenities, and add further guarantees on appearance, landscaping, layout and scale.

For more details, search application AVA/2016/0754 via www.ambervalley.gov.uk.