Update on Forum activities – 8th September 2020

Edenfield Neighbourhood Plan

Following the consultation with residents and businesses on 29th February and subsequent consultations with non-resident landowners, the draft Neighbourhood Plan was updated to incorporate relevant comments received. The revised draft Plan was then sent to Rossendale Council in early April for their comments and also for them to undertake a screening assessment as required under environmental regulations. We are still awaiting both the comments and the screening assessment although we anticipate receiving them during September. Once we have received the Council’s screening assessment and comments we will be able to finalise the Regulation 14 version of the Plan which will go to a formal public six-week consultation. We had hoped that this consultation would take place by July but the delay in receiving responses from the Council now means that it will be much later in the year.

Rossendale Draft Local Plan

At the conclusion of the Examination Hearings in October 2019 the Inspectors issued a Schedule of Actions of over 80 items for the Council to respond to. It was agreed that the Council would respond to these by May of this year – but that was before coronavirus struck. On 18th June the first batch of responses was published on the Council’s website which covered fourteen of the Inspectors’ requests and by 31st August there have been no further responses. The latest information published on the Council website on 1st September states that “additional items are anticipated in the current month with a series of consultation exercises to relevant parties anticipated thereafter”.
All announcements and documents can be viewed on the Council’s website:
https://www.rossendale.gov.uk/info/210148/local_plan/10629/emerging_local_plan/3

The timetable issued by the Council in January anticipated that the Inspectors’ final report would be issued in November but, with the delays, it is now more than likely that this will go into next year.
The responses issued on 18th June included some that relate to the proposals for Edenfield and the Forum has been reviewing these in detail in readiness for any future consultation. We will review the remaining responses as they are published.

We have had a meeting with our MP, Jake Berry, who remains very supportive. Jake subsequently wrote to the Inspectors and the Council with details of some of our major concerns providing summary comments that we felt had not been fully addressed at the Hearings. The inspectors responded and both letters have been posted on the Council website (Examination Library documents EL6.012a and EL6.012b). We hope that our information will now get fully considered. Jake also submitted questions to the Minister of State (Housing, Communities and Local Government).

We have concerns with some of Highways England’s statements on the proposed developments in Edenfield particularly some of the technical aspects. We engaged our highways consultants, SK Transport Planning Ltd, to write to Highways England detailing our concerns. This letter and subsequent correspondence has been posted in the Examination Library 6 on the Council website under reference EL6.013a-e.

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