Council backtracks on Alderley Edge sites proposed for development

building homes

Cheshire East Council is proposing to make a number of revisions to the second part of its Local Plan Strategy - known as the site allocations and development policies document (SADPD),which identifies sites for development in the local service centres of Alderley Edge, Audlem, Bollington, Chelford, Disley, Holmes Chapel, Mobberley and Prestbury.

The SAPPD is now progressing and the latest draft has been revised to remove some of the potential sites for housing and employment development, most of which would have involved taking more land out of the green belt, including all the sites earmarked for development in Alderley Edge.

The (revised) document, which will go before the council's strategic planning board on 23rd September, no longer includes the following:

Site ALD 1 - Land adjacent to Jenny Heyes The land adjacent to Jenny Heyes is allocated for residential development for around 10 new homes. This greenfield site is 0.47 ha in size and is located to the north east of Alderley Edge, on Heyes Lane.

Site ALD 2 - Ryleys Farm, north of Chelford Road The land at Ryleys Farm, north of Chelford Road is allocated for residential development for around 45 new homes. This greenfield site is 1.6 ha in size and is located to the west of Alderley Edge, north of Chelford Road.

Site ALD 4 - Land north of Beech Road The land north of Beech Road is allocated for residential development for around 35 new homes.This greenfield site is 2.9 ha in size and is located to the north of Alderley Edge, north of Beech Road.

Additionally safeguarded land is identified in Green Belt areas and may be required to meet longer-term development needs.

Councillor Craig Browne said "I welcome the publication today of the Council's revised SADPD, which removes from the Plan green belt sites previously been earmarked for development. Locally, this means that: ALD1 (land at Jenny Heyes), ALD2 (land at Ryleys Farm) and ALD4 (land north of Beech Road) will remain within the green belt.

"The Independent Group at Cheshire East Council believes that sufficient land for development has already been allocated in and around the borough's principal towns. Given that further "windfall" developments have and will continue to come forwards over the next few years, we argued that there was no need to allocate further green belt sites in villages like Alderley Edge.

"In the submission version of the SADPD, ALD3 (an area of approximately 2.23ha adjacent to Ryleys Farm) will be safeguarded for possible development during a future Local Plan period (after 2030). This is reduced from 2.29ha in the previous version of the SADPD."

The proposed revisions also include:

● Revised policies for retail development and town centres, reflecting reduced demand for new retail floorspace and a need for diversified uses in town centres to support their vitality; and

● Higher environmental standards for new homes to help tackle climate change.

If approved by by cabinet on 6th October, the updated SADPD will be re-published to allow further representations to be made.

The SADPD will require approval by full council, scheduled for spring 2021. The representations will then be submitted to the government, alongside the supporting evidence, and will be considered by a planning inspector during an examination.

Councillor Toni Fox, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for planning said: "We promised during the public consultation last year that we would carefully consider all the comments that were made. These revisions demonstrate that we have fully considered and reviewed the 2,700 responses submitted alongside the latest evidence and information.

"Planning always involves balancing a range of issues – facilitating new homes, jobs and other investments that are needed, whilst protecting our local environment and the health and wellbeing of our residents. The revisions we have made reflect all of these considerations.

"We are conscious that central government is consulting on proposals to radically reform the planning system, including the way in which councils prepare their local plans.

"This inevitably raises some uncertainty for councils currently preparing plans, and residents.
"However, until we have more detail it is impossible to gauge how these may affect the emerging SADPD. At this time therefore it is important to progress this document to its next stage."