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We are horrified at plans for a water bottling factory on a high open plateau just next to the Peak District National Park. We’re urging people to tell High Peak Borough Council to reject the plans – quoting the reference HPK/2010/06612.

UPDATE! This planning meeting to decide on the application was due to happen on 14 February. However, it has been deferred now so that it it can be heard alongside another controversial application – for the accompanying pipeline. This means you have more time to object.

Nestle has applied to High Peak to build the bottling and distribution plant at Waterswallows just north of Buxton – and two kilometres from the Peak District park boundary. We say that the countryside is the wrong place for this! The factory will be huge and have storage tanks that are nearly 20 metres high. It will be visible from just about everywhere in the area, including the national park.

Waterswallows is in an area that has been designated by High Peak council as countryside. This means that only buildings that relate to farming and the rural economy are allowed – so permitting this clearly industrial development will contravene High Peak’s Local Plan.

The bottling plant itself will cover 2.3 hectares, but the whole of the proposed site is 7.3 hectares.  We’re really worried about what will happen with the remaining land. If Nestle get permission to build the water bottling factory, they’ve still got another five hectares to develop. And once this big monster is up and running, it would be hard for High Peak to then turn down applications for even more industrial development in this area.

Nestle currently has its water bottling factory in the centre of Buxton. The new site is nearly three kilometres away and there are implications for transport and sustainability too.  It will be harder to reach for employees, especially those who currently walk, cycle or take public transport.