The Cornhill Project is a matter of serious public concern. Hardly a week goes by without someone expressing concerns about the project in local media.
It is noted that the Staffordshire Moorlands Local Development Framework-An Ecological Survey 2010, (see page 15) refers to a Biodiversity Alert Site where ‘development should be avoided on the site.

The Churnet Valley Accessibility and Connectivity Study [2011] identifies a number of serious constraints in developing the Cornhill site including :-

 Problematic access
 Large areas of regeneration would be necessary
 Significant investment in transport infrastructure would be required to deliver the site [C.V. Access and Connectivity Study 2011 page 27]
 The need to overcome engineering issues
 Funding constraints [ibid page 31]

The proposed development would be in direct conflict with national planning guidance that stresses the ‘need to reduce travel especially by car’. [Department of Communities and Local Government {2006} Planning Policy Guidance Note 13 para.2]
Other criticisms of the proposed development that have been the subject of debate in the local media are,

 the site is isolated from Leek town centre.

 the development will have a tendency to further deplete the economic activity in
the town centre shops.

 that it will not work as a ‘transport hub’ for a number of reasons. In particular it will not be an attractive option to tourist intent on maximising the ‘thrill-seeking’ opportunities of Alton Towers.

Perhaps the most telling observation in the public domain concerning the project at Cornhill is that noted at paragraph 3.6 of the Report to Cabinet dated 26/10/2010 which notes ‘there remains a very high risk that the project cannot be delivered’. As such it must by definition fail the required ‘sustainability’ test.

Helping to Protect the Churnet Valley