There has been a new twist in the access situation to Staden Quarry (also know as Cow Dale) in the Peak.
Last January we reported about an access threat to Staden Quarry. At that time a planning application had been lodged to develop the quarry into a water bottling plant and business park with over 1000 parking spaces. It was unclear what the future of climbing would be with some reports about the site containing a climbing wall, others suggesting access would be maintained and others suggesting there would be no access. In the end this became immaterial when the planning application was rejected by High Peak Borough Council.
From the report:
"The proposed development would be harmful to the character and appearance of the countryside which is designated Special Landscape Area, and especially harmful to the character of Ashwood Dale as a result of the construction of the new access. The development will be harmful to the setting of the National park and harmful to ecological interests particularly the ancient woodland alongside the A6."
Full report here (PDF).
Following the rejection of the application, permissive access for climbers was withdrawn and new signs (above) were erected - the land is in private ownership and there is no public access to it.
In a new development the landowner has stated that this is not a permanent exclusion and has even gone as far as to say that he will restore concessionary access for climbers after a second planning application for the water bottling plant and an appeal against refusal of an earlier application have been determined. He has clarified this by stating that restoration of concessionary access is not dependent upon the outcome of the planning process - access will be restored "whatever the outcome, one way or another".
Until then he has insisted that there is no concessionary access and has asked climbers to keep away.