Our third meeting. Artist's impression.
Almost exactly a year on from our launch meeting, and B.A.T.S can still pack ‘em in on a sweltering evening!
A hundred and fifty local residents packed the Lion Hotel on Wednesday 7th for public meeting number three.
Kicking things off, Ali Hubbard unveiled the results of our Matlock Traders Survey. Matlock, in their recent Sainsbury’s development, has some similarities to Belper, insofar as an unsightly part of town (Cawdor Quarry) was developed by a supermarket chain who built a "relief road" into their plans.
In short, the opening of Sainsbury’s and the new road has been a disaster for Matlock traders: To see just how MUCH of a disaster, download the full survey on our "Downloads" page…
Now then: Sainsbury’s – as part of their planning application – had to present a case that they would be good for Matlock. They did. We have copies of their reports and retail impact assessments and they make out that the coming of Sainsbury’s will usher in something of a Golden Age for the town.
Maybe they lied. (Interestingly; one of the people involved in selling this albatross to the people of Matlock is also closely involved in various shady dealings for Tesco in Belper...)
Next, The Leader of Derbyshire County Council – Joyce Sanders – accompanied by Council officers for Highways and Property, talked about the County’s part in the planning process. We were also given some useful pointers on how to proceed.
The main part of the evening, chaired by Vickie Minion, was spent discussing Amber Valley Borough Council’s forthcoming "Development Brief" for the Derwent Street / Meadow’s Edge area.
This is the document – a sort of checklist of what the Local Authority would allow to be built on the land - against which any future planning application must be measured.
Unfortunately, Tesco pay for the consultants who are writing the Brief(!), but we are assured by Derek Stafford (AVBC Director of Planning) that the Borough get control over what will be in it.
Furthermore, he’s invited B.A.T.S Members to submit ideas for the Brief.
And this is where YOU come in…
We’re putting together a submission drawn from the views of Belper Residents. Send YOUR ideas of what you’d like to see the site used for to us through our "Feedback" page.