The petition to safeguard the sky-tip near Penwithick (which has been under threat from the proposed development of a so-called eco-community) secured great deal of publicity last week.
It ranged from the Daily Mail through to Radio 5live and Radio Cornwall.
Much of the coverage was factually challenged, with the Daily Mail even headlining: “Could Cornish slag heap become a Unesco site? Campaigners fight to get 'landmark' recognised after plans threaten to flatten it …”
I was quoted by the Daily Mail, though they did not speak to me. They reused a statement from 18 months ago, which was: “I cannot comprehend this sudden desire to wreck such an important part of the industrial heritage of mid Cornwall and, to be frank, it saddens me greatly. Make no mistake, the destruction of the sky-tip is unacceptable and we must do all that we can do to stop such cultural vandalism.”
Readers of this blog will know that I attempted to have the “eco-community” removed from the Cornwall Local Plan at the last meeting of the Planning Policy Advisory Committee.
Supporters of the scheme did however acknowledge that there needed to be stronger controls over the development, including the protection of the sky-tip.
Text has been added to the Cornwall Local Plan, which will be debated at Tuesday’s meeting of Full Council.
The new text includes the following:
Policy 3 …
The provision of eco-communities at West Carclaze and Baal [and Par Docks] led by a masterplan and design code that will set out the framework for the development and reflect the aspiration for environmental quality, including the delivery of all of the following alongside the other policies of this plan:
- 30% affordable housing and 5% self and/or custom build housing;
And for the West Carclaze and Baal sites:
- Provision of employment space, Carluddon technology park and space for further economic growth;
- The provision of a new local centre to include facilities for health, neighbourhood shopping, community facilities and a new primary school;
- Strategic scale open space with public access and trails linking into existing networks as part of green infrastructure improvements;
- The retention of the Sky Tip and other distinctive landscape features as part of the green infrastructure of the site;
- Demonstrate high levels of energy efficiency in the fabric of buildings on the site;
- Strategic Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems to reduce flood risk on and beyond the site;
- Meeting all of the regulated energy requirements of the development from renewable and low carbon sources on or near to the site;
- Provision of low carbon heat via a heat network with consideration given to sourcing that heat from geothermal resources within the vicinity of the site; and
For information, I will still be opposing the eco-community at this Tuesday’s meeting.