Minerals Plan: Key Issues & Options

Derby & Derbyshire Minerals Core Strategy: Key Issues & Options

Chapter 1: Introduction

1.1 Minerals have become an increasingly important part of our everyday lives. They play an essential role in contributing towards social and economic progress through their many uses. These include the provision of bulk and specialist materials for the construction and maintenance of road, rail and industrial infrastructure, the provision of raw materials and finished products in the building of homes, hospitals, schools and workplaces, for industrial processes and for use as fuels.  Minerals are also consumed in processes connected with the manufacture of many products that we use and have come to rely upon on a daily basis, for example, paint, paper and toothpaste.

1.2 Derbyshire provides a significant proportion of some of the minerals used in the UK. Minerals are a finite resource and are only available in a limited number of locations, often coinciding with some of our most attractive landscapes. The exploitation of mineral reserves is unlike other forms of development in that it can only take place where the mineral occurs and can result in adverse social and environmental impacts.  The extraction and transportation of minerals also have the potential to give rise to environmental pollution affecting the amenity of local residents.  Mineral extraction can however also lead to benefits, through for example the enhanced restoration of sites, which may, for example, assist biodiversity and facilitate recreational after-uses.  

What is the purpose of the Minerals Core Strategy?

1.3 The Derby & Derbyshire Minerals Core Strategy (the "plan") is being prepared jointly by Derbyshire County Council and Derby City Council.  The plan will seek to balance and reconcile conflicting interests in order to manage minerals development in a way which provides the best result for Derbyshire.  It will look forward to 2030 and will include policies and proposals to ensure that development takes place in a way which causes the least harm to people and the environment.  It will show the places or localities where future working of minerals will take place, giving greater certainty to businesses and local communities.  It will include measures to help minimise and adapt to the impacts of climate change.

1.4 The plan will replace the policies of the Derby & Derbyshire Minerals Local Plan, which was adopted in 2000 (with an alteration to coal policies in 2002). There have been significant changes in government policy since the Minerals Local Plan was adopted and a more up to date plan is required to guide development over the next 20 years.  Some of the policies in the Minerals Local Plan may still be relevant, however, and can be used to inform the development of new policies.

1.5 The plan will cover the area of Derby and Derbyshire outside the area of the Peak National Park, which is responsible for its own planning arrangements. For convenience, the area of the plan is referred to throughout this document as "Derbyshire".

Preparing the plan

1.6 We started preparing the plan in March 2009.  Since then, we have been collecting information, which has been essential in developing our knowledge and understanding of the issues involved.  We have also talked to many people and organisations who have given us some useful ideas on what should be included in the plan.  We are now calling on all the people, businesses and organisations that have an interest in minerals planning in Derby and Derbyshire to comment on this document. These comments will be important in helping us to prepare the plan. We aim to complete the final draft of the plan in 2012 and seek the Government's approval, before adopting it in 2013.

What is the purpose of the consultation?

1.7 This document is the first wide-ranging stage of consultation on the plan and is aimed at the whole community, including members of the public, businesses and environmental groups.

1.8 We need to make a sound plan.  To do that, we need to have sufficient background knowledge, the most important parts of which we have set out in the first part of this document;

  • We know what is expected of us by the Government, and what the plan for our region says about minerals development in our area (chapter 2);
  • We know a lot about the special characteristics of Derby & Derbyshire (chapter 3)
  • We have gathered information about minerals and their extraction in Derby and Derbyshire (chapter 4)

We need you to tell us anything that you think will add to our knowledge or will help us make a sound plan. 

1.9 In the chapters that follow the background information, we have set out a suggested spatial vision for minerals development (chapter 5), from which flows the plan objectives (chapter 6).

1.10 In chapter 7, we set out what we see as the major issues that Derby and Derbyshire are likely to face in terms of mineral extraction over the long term. We have provided some possible solutions to these problems and are seeking your views on them.

1.11 Those are not easy decisions but, if you give us your opinions on what approach we should take, you will help us to get them right.

How you can respond

1.12 The consultation period for this document is 8 weeks long, starting on the 30th April 2010 and ending on the 25th June 2010.  Please feel free to comment on any aspect of these issues and options. The documents are available on our website at      


1.13 You can email your comments to wasteminsldf@derbyshire.gov.uk or write to: Development Plan Team (Minerals) at Derbyshire County Council, Shand House, Dale Road South, Matlock, DE4 3RY.

Further information

1.14 Alongside this Issues & Options Consultation document, we are making available a series of evidence base papers on each of the major minerals found in Derbyshire. These papers draw on information from a wide variety of sources and represent the current status of our knowledge on these minerals. They include information on the uses, geology, production and consumption figures, reserves, methods for their exploration, working and reclamation and markets of the mineral concerned.  We would be pleased to receive any further information or comments that may help us develop these papers. They will be updated and developed as we progress the Plan.

1.15 In addition, there is a paper on minerals safeguarding which sets out how we will define safeguarding areas for different types of mineral to ensure that they are not sterilised unnecessarily by other development and, therefore, that they will be available for use by future generations.