Please Write Objection To Raisgill Turbine Appeal, Reference APP/H0928/A/14/2223447 ASAP

Landscape conservation is important. Raisgill Hall have appealed EDC’s decision to reject their wind turbine planning proposal, if you love fine landscape, can you please write to the Planning Inspectorate and ask them to reject the appeal? An email to may be the quickest and easiest method. See below for details of the situation.

Location, location, location! EDC Planners Tour Developments In Eden District Promoting Better Understanding Of Planning Impacts

modified from  Barry Cooper’s EDC Press release by Charles Paxton

 “provision of affordable housing is one of the biggest issues facing the District”

Councillor Michael Slee, Chairman of EDC’s Planning Applications Committee

“Location, location, location!” Eden District Council’s Planning Applications Committee (PAC) embarked on a tour of completed development last Friday to see how the quality and design of developments in Eden District is helping to enhance and sustain the area.

The developments the PAC visited included:

  • A slurry lagoon at South Dyke Farm, Salkeld Dykes
  • A wind turbine at Barrockside Farm, Carleton
  • Units at the Castle Retail Park, Penrith
  • Housing developments at  Clifton, Crosby Ravensworth and Kirkby Stephen.

PAC determines the most controversial and significant planning applications, ranging from housing development and industrial sites to building conversions and extensions. The quality of development being approved in the District is also helping to create and sustain jobs in the local economy and supply much needed housing.

According to EDC, research from the CBI shows that every £1 spent in the construction industry generates a £2.84 multiplier of additional benefit for the UK’s economy. In Eden District 16.7% of men are employed in construction, compared to 12.8% nationally. It is the biggest source of employment for men compared to other sectors.

The PAC team covered a lot of ground on their tour, but their visit to Crosby Ravensworth didn’t seem at all rushed.

Affordable housing need has featured prominently in the news recently and it is developments like Crosby Ravensworth’s Stoneworks Garth community led affordable housing project, Kirkby Stephen’s and Clifton’s social housing that offer hope to people looking for affordable local housing in Eden while producing the valuable chain of economic benefit. The mood was light, but the Planner’s visit was intelligently focused, with plenty of poignant questions and answers. Some homes at Stoneworks Garth are faced in local buff sandstone, others with render, the porches help unify the development. Another unifying factor at Stoneworks Garth is the  environmentally friendly heating.

Renewable heating in each home distinguishes this development. With the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s announcement this week that anthropogenic influence on climate change is an undeniable reality, the heating systems in this affordable housing project render it exemplary. When one planner wondered “Where are the chimneys?” David Graham, Chair of the local community land trust explained,”These are modern homes, there are no coal fires, so they don’t need chimneys.” Coupled with good insulation, the air-source heat pumps provide comfortable, clean modern heating efficiency. The self-builds here are eco-friendly too with solar thermal and solar photovoltaic panels and biomas heating. Very fitting, set as they are, in the beautiful Lyvennet Valley countryside.

David Graham, Chairman of the Lyvennet Community Trust and Chair of the national Community Land Trusts' Association describes the historical progress of the Stoneworks Garth community housing project in Crosby Ravensworth

“The gardens are looking more established now, the houses more ‘lived in’. People are stamping their mark on these homes,” says David Graham (left), Chairman of the Lyvennet Community Trust and Chair of the national Community Land Trusts’ Association describing the historical progress of the Stoneworks Garth community housing project in Crosby Ravensworth to visiting PAC members including the head of planning (centre left) and the PAC Chair (centre right)

EDC Planners from PAC view ecologically friendly housing at Stoneworks Garth, Crosby Ravensworth,

“Where are the chimneys?” EDC Planners from PAC view ecologically friendly housing at Stoneworks Garth, Crosby Ravensworth,

EDC PAC Planners admiring an exterior-mounted intake unit for a Mitsubishi Air-source heat pump at The Lyvennet Community Trust's Stoneworks Garth development in Crosby Ravensworth.

EDC PAC Planners and Parish Councillor Gordon Bowness admiring an exterior-mounted intake unit for a Mitsubishi Air-source heat pump at The Lyvennet Community Trust’s Stoneworks Garth development in Crosby Ravensworth.

Such housing, within easy walking distance of the Primary school, Community pub, Village Hall and Parish Church affording a great start for young families but also a useful opportunity for mature people needing to downsize and remain in the area that they love.

Of the tour, Councillor Michael Slee, Chairman of the PAC said: “It is very important for committee members to have a good knowledge about the quality and types of development that are taking place in the District. We also need to garner people’s views about these developments and recognise the important role planning plays in promoting good quality design and sustaining the local economy. This tour gave members the chance to visit a variety of different types of development from new housing and retail premises, to wind turbines and a slurry lagoon.

“We had the opportunity to view an affordable home that is nearing completion at a Story Homes’ development at Kirkby Stephen. This will be of particular interest to the committee as the provision of affordable housing is one of the biggest issues facing the District. We also spoke with representatives from parish councillors on the tour, so they could feedback the views of the local community about the developments we visited.”

In the last full year Eden District Council granted approval for 207 new homes to be built in the District, this includes 34 affordable homes. Story Homes are building 106 new homes at developments at Birkbeck Gardens, Kirkby Stephen and Clifton Hill Gardens, near Penrith.

Claire Bainbridge and nine month old daughter Grace, welcome representatives from Kirkby Stephen Town Council, Eden District Council and Story Homes for a tour of the new market led and affordable housing at Birkbeck Gardens, Nateby Road, Kirkby Stephen.

Claire Bainbridge and nine month old daughter Grace, welcome representatives from Kirkby Stephen Town Council, Eden District Council and Story Homes for a tour of the new market led and affordable housing at Birkbeck Gardens, Nateby Road, Kirkby Stephen. EDC Photo

A local young person who has purchased one of the market led houses at the Story Homes site at Kirkby Stephen said: “This development gave me and many other young people the opportunity to buy a first home in and around the area that we were raised, the existing stock on the market in the smaller villages and towns in Eden is not within a realistic price range for a first time buyer. It’s great to see how quickly the houses are being snapped up by young local people and this shows an obvious need.”

A spokesperson for Story Homes said: “Demand on the developments in Clifton and Kirkby Stephen has been high and we have recruited local staff and sub contractors to help us deliver these much needed homes and our quality product, which is sensitive to the surroundings. We have a reputation for providing high quality private houses and we are proud that we can retain this quality in our social housing. Both developments complement and enhance the sustainable credentials of these key and local service centres, whilst delivering much needed open market and affordable housing within the Eden District.”

For more information about the local young families benefitting from the new housing at Birkbeck Gardens visit

The affordable housing at Birkbeck Gardens and Clifton Hill Gardens are being managed by Riverside Housing. Riverside’s Project Manager, Becci Kenvyn said: “These properties offer much needed affordable housing for rent by local people. The two schemes address housing need by offering a mix of bungalows and houses. The provision of homes for Shared Ownership at the Kirkby Stephen site, offer a fantastic opportunity for local first time buyers to get on the housing ladder in an area that would have otherwise been unaffordable.”

For more information about Eden District Council visit or follow them on Twitter or Facebook.


UK’s first Neighbourhood Plan Referendum Results in Yes Vote

A historic Yes vote is the result of the UK’s first Localism Referendum, which was held in the Upper Eden area of Cumbria on 7 March 2013.


Voters have endorsed the Upper Eden Neighbourhood Plan (covering Brough Parish and 16 surrounding parishes in East Cumbria), this will now go forward to be formally included as part of Eden District Council’s Development Plan (planning policy used to determine planning applications) at a full Council meeting on 11 April 2013.


Neighbourhood Planning is a new system of spatial planning which allows residents to come together to produce their own development plan for their area.


The result of the Referendum is as follows:

Referendum on the adoption of the Upper Eden Neighbourhood Plan

  1. A referendum was held on Thursday 7 March 2013 to decide on the question below:

    ‘Do you want Eden District Council to use the Neighbourhood Plan for the Upper Eden area to help it decide planning applications in the neighbourhood area?’


  • Votes in favour: 1,310
  • Votes against: 138
  • Total Turnout: 1,452 (33.67%)


Eden District Council’s Leader Councillor Gordon Nicolson, said: “I offer my congratulations to the Upper Eden Planning Group on a successful result. I am delighted that the residents of Upper Eden have decided by a significant  majority to endorse the Upper Eden Community Plan. This is the first plan in the country. I do hope that local people will now submit planning applications and we look forward to dealing with them. That is how the communities will benefit as the housing they want will be built in places they want to live.”

Eden District Council’s Planning and Economy Portfolio Holder and Brough Ward Councillor, Malcolm Smith, said: “As the Planning and Economy Portfolio for Eden District Council I am overjoyed with the “Yes” vote in the referendum. I am sure the local community will take up the benefits this plan will open up for them with their planning applications. I would like to congratulate everyone, including the 17 parishes for the effort they put in to achieve this unique and positive result.”

The Upper Eden Neighbourhood Plan has been produced by the Upper Eden Community Plan Group, which represents 17 parish councils across the area. For more information visit
For more information about Eden District Council visit or find them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter


Please Support The Orton Fells Landscape Designation With The Amendment Proposed By Friends Of The Lake District


Here’s your chance to help positively influence British landscape conservation! Some readers will have visited the British Lake District National Park and the neighbouring Yorkshire Dales National Park. The chances are good that you will have passed through some beautiful countryside in between that wasn’t designated as Park the first time around in the late 1940′s,  Westmorland’s The Orton Fells.

The Orton Fells Landscape is being considered for inclusion in the Dales National ParkThe Orton Fells Landscape is now being considered for inclusion in the Yorkshire Dales National Park

It’s a wild and beautiful landscape of karstic limestone pavements, upland meadows and heather-clad moorland (home to Black Cock, a form of rare Grouse), hardy sheep and fell ponies, with the rich fertile Orton valley running to The Lunesdale gorge. It’s Eden District’s Wild West.

Fell Ponies at Sunbiggin Tarn, Orton Fells, Westmorland, CumbriaFell Ponies at Sunbiggin Tarn, Orton Fells, Westmorland, Cumbria

The time has come for all those of us who support our Orton Fells’ inclusion in The Dales National Park to write in to the Secretary of State for The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Caroline Spelman to voice our support and suggest amendments where they seem desirable.

Aerial view of distinctive limestone pavement overlooking The Orton valleyAerial view of distinctive limestone pavement overlooking The Orton valley

Limestone pavement above Sunbiggin Tarn, Orton FellsLimestone pavement above Sunbiggin Tarn, Orton Fells, rare sub-arctic flora micro-habitat of internationally recognised importance.

Why would this be a good thing?
It is likely that our Orton Fells’ inclusion in the National Park would help conserve the natural beauty of this lovely area of Westmorland for our own and future generations and would facilitate considerable economic uplift for local businesses while being an asset to the Nation and for visitors from other regions. The inclusion of our area is long overdue, everybody so far consulted agrees that the natural beauty warrants conservation. Some of the most beautiful Dales in the National Park are Cumbrian (Mallerstang with its historic Pendragon Castle for instance) and in no sense would our section of the Park be a “poor cousin”, we would preserve our identity under a wider banner that truly deserves special status for landscape quality and that is closely connected geologically and topographically with The Dales.
We have had the spoken assurance of The Dales National Park’s Chief Executive (at the January 19th Fells To Dales Business Forum meeting in Kirkby Stephen) that the naming of our area of the Park will be arranged to best suit local wishes, for example The Westmorland Fells or Westmorland Dales. This may well be resolved at a Public inquiry, should we have one, later in the year.
Economic Benefit
At the same meeting we heard estimates of anticipated economic benefit for local businesses involved in tourism to be somewhere between 10 and 20% increase in annual turn-over, with the duration in occupancy expected to be extended to about 34 weeks in the year.
At this stage we can still ask for amendments to the planning, if we wish. One important amendment to request would be the adoption of the northern boundary proposed by The Friends of The Lake District that would include land with superb views around Reagill and Sleagill. A good deal of thought has gone into this boundary suggestion and it enjoys popular support among many of the residents of those Parishes.
Making Your Voices Heard – Key Points

  • You don’t have to be a resident to voice your opinion on this matter. Past and prospective visitors to the area are welcome to voice their support, please state your interest and it will count.
  • In your communication please include your name, address and signature and include your message.  Please refer to the benefits mentioned above as justification if you wish.
  • Each member of your household may write in separately with equal validity.
  • Numbers count.
  • This is a once in a life-time opportunity that will have far-reaching and long lasting benefits for us and the Nation.

The address to write to, please, is:
Department for The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs,
Protected Landscapes Team,
Zone 1/09 Temple Quay House,
2 The Square, Temple Quay,
Or by email to

The deadline for getting your message to DEFRA is March 16th.
For more information on the planning, please see the Lakes To Dales Section of Natural England’s Website

Third Time Lucky For Carlisle Airport? Your support is needed!

Would Cumbria be better with its own airport at Carlisle? A great many people think it would provide powerful economic benefits. You may have heard that Stobart’s third planning application for Carlisle airport is expected to be reviewed later this month by Carlisle City Council. You can play an important role in helping progress the plans.

Many of us have already written supporting previous applications. However, with each new application only those letters sent in specific to that application are taken into account. So the Carlisle Chamber of Commerce say it’s important that we all get behind this once again.

This airport is thought by many to be vital for our business economy, and the Chamber of Commerce feel that Stobart’s plans are the best, and probably our last, opportunity for the airport to succeed and to keep WA and Stobarts in the county. So please write now to Carlisle City Council supporting the application. Such letters of support are taken into account in making decisions on planning applications, and the number received makes a difference, so it’s important for the county that we all get behind this. Everybody in the household can and should comment separately if they have a view on the matter. Numbers count! Please have your say.

Please find below the postal and email address for letters of support in relation to Carlisle Airport:

Carlisle City Council
Planning and Housing Department
Civic Centre

Letters can also be emailed directly to

If you’d like more background info then please read on.

Current income is insufficient to support the case for a modern day airport and in fact the airport loses a significant amount of money. It’s therefore necessary as part of the development, as with other smaller airports, to establish economically viable and sustainable non-aeronautical revenue to ensure the viability and sustainability of the airport.

The airport has been in decline, with no commercial flights, for some years and for many businesses this lack of connectivity to markets and opportunities outside the region has held back growth – with the knock-on effect to supplier businesses and the wider economy.

Although many businesses may not use the airport directly, evidence shows that in areas where there is a successful regional airport the whole business economy benefits, not just those who use it. There is a chain of benefit. The airport is likely to benefit not just the Carlisle area but the whole of Cumbria and Southwest Scotland.

• For more information contact Suzanne Caldwell on 0845 226 0040 or 07825 050 298.
• Cumbria Chamber of Commerce is a not for profit company limited by guarantee, owned by its members for the benefit of members. Our aim is to help the business community throughout Cumbria to grow and prosper.
• For more information on the Chamber and its activities see