The push to stop unauthorised quarrying of limestone at Longstone Edge received a massive boost in 2009 with news that all quarrying at the site must cease.
Over the past few years, there has been a long-running legal battle over Backdale Quarry on Longstone Edge and the continued destruction of this area. In 2009 however, the Court of Appeal ruled in favour of the Peak District National Park Authority (PDNPA) and the Government forcing all operations to cease.
Controversy has centred on interpreting an old planning permission which determined how much limestone could be extracted whilst getting out the mineral fluorspar. A previous public inquiry ruled that this should be limited to a ratio of two parts of limestone to one part of fluorspar. This was then overturned in 2008 by the High Court, but subsequently upheld by the Court of Appeal.
The Save Longstone Edge Group (SLEG) has however, warned that serious threats still remain to Longstone Edge, even though the quarrying by Bleaklow Industries has been stopped by the court.
In the latest SLEG Newsletter Chairman John Lambert notes that for the last six months or so there has been no activity by Bleaklow Industries. However Bleaklow is seeking leave to take its case to the European Court of Human Rights. There is also uncertainty surrounding future activities of the other quarrying company active on Longstone Edge, Glebe Mines. They have recently signed a four year agreement with the Peak National Park Planning Authority not to mine the area known as Peak Pasture but this is not a final resolution to the threat to the National Park.
In the mean time, the quarrying of Longstone Edge has ceased but its long term future still hangs in the balance. The BMC, one of nine organisations which form the Longstone Edge Coalition, will continue to monitor the situation and keep a watching brief…
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