Opinion: “Don’t Let Bullsmoor Disappear”

In the last few days Bullsmoor has disappeared into the fog. The same days that the public enquiry has been taking place at the Council Chamber in Ripley. The hazy images somehow represent the in-between time we are in when we don’t yet know if Bullsmoor will disappear into the hands of developers.

I am hoping that Bullsmoor won’t disappear the way that Whitemoor did. The name of the Co-op gives a reminder that there was once a moor there, and I wonder if anyone remembers what it was like. I wouldn’t want us to be left with just a street sign and future generations asking ‘What was Bullsmoor?’

The enquiry began on Tuesday and carries on into next week. The inspector is hearing the arguments for and against the development with a focus on different topics each day.

They have already covered heritage and landscape (covering things like the visual impact of development and its effect on World Heritage Site status). Amber Valley Borough Council, Appellant (the developers), Historic England, Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site and some courageous people from Protect Belper (speaking on behalf of local residents) have all had their say, being cross examined by a barrister in a formal process, which isn’t easy.

This is what’s happening next week:

Tuesday 17th April – Planning balance

Wednesday 18th April – Conditions and Obligations

Wednesday 18th April – Bullsmoor site visit (in the morning)

If anyone wants to show support it’d be great if you can attend the enquiry. The public are allowed to attend at any time during the days which start at 9.30am. This would help to support the Protect Belper speakers who are  putting a lot of effort in to making a case on behalf of thousands of local residents.

Sarah Hinds has recently started a blog about Bullsmoor and the above is an excerpt from it available now. She is interested in hearing about and celebrating the important location and has asked local people to share their stories.

She said: “The blog arisen out of the fight against developments there and I would like it to become a place where Bullsmoor is celebrated in local stories, memories, history, poetry, paintings.”

To read more of Sarah’s Bullsmoor Blog click here.

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