NEWS: Local Plan / Armistice events / potholes!

News-in-brief  from Draycott-In-The-Moors in early March 2018
In this post we have news of…: Moorlands Local Plan / Armistice Day events / pothole misery …
(NB – There are also dozens of events coming up in our locality – including a pop-jazz band evening…  Check out the Events page)
For daily updates about life in our district, keep checking the village Facebook page

– – –
Plan coming to conclusion

The latest draft of the Staffordshire Moorlands ‘Local Plan’ is now published,  and copies can be seen in libraries and on-line. This is the fifth draft, and, in effect, this is the last, as no more changes are likely outside of a massive surprise.

It only reveals what we already knew: that Draycott, in effect, will soon become an urban village, as part of a ribbon development with Blythe Bridge. Blythe Bridge’s village-boundary is even to be extended this way.
Previous protesting comments from local residents did not shake the planners’ resolve.

So… Draycott will see two new housing estates in the next couple of years. Two already have permission to go ahead – one of 168 homes at Cresswell, plus one of 118 homes bordering the A50 on a site behind Chandni Cottage (which will soon grow, to become 300 homes). Overall, 1500 homes are set to be built in the Blythe Bridge/Draycott/Caverswall ‘ribbon’ area over the next 15 years.
Plus… the ridge overlooking Uttoxeter Road already has outline permission for further housing & employment ‘opportunities’ in the near future.

As for employment sites, Blythe Park in Cresswell is set to be one of the biggest developments across the region. Our local community-action group VVSM are on record as saying that “… what this means is that ALL of Staffordshire Moorlands’ quota for required rural allocation of employment-sites is now to be found in … Cresswell ! What’s more, the expected Blythe Vale allocation, which will stretch from Blythe Bridge to Cresswell, could mean dozens of workshops and small factories being built on the land there on top of the ridge over the next twenty years. All this will change the face of this village.”
Residents in Cheadle Road will also note that a new employment park is also earmarked in the Plan, on a site off New Haden Road (just down from Draycott Cross).Moorlands Local Plan symbol
(What’s a little mysterious is that sections on traveller-site allocation haves been left out. Previous drafts had sites in Draycott and Cresswell strongly tipped, but this current draft is silent on the matter. Watch this space, as they say.)

This final draft is now open to consultation, but only for legal points – one can no longer challenge the locations or numbers of homes & employment sites.

So… what’s next? Staffordshire Moorlands Council will submit this Plan for approval to a government inquiry in the autumn.
And there you have the only real reason to comment on the current Plan – because anyone who does make a comment will also be offered the chance to put their case before the government inspector in the autumn – in fact this is the only way you can ‘qualify’ to take part in the inquiry. It seems a daft way to do it, but there it is.
So, yes, fireworks could start again in the autumn – but don’t count on it.

SEE: Staffs Moorlands Local Plan Spring 2018 Revision

– – –
Pothole misery

Once upon a time, a pothole in the roads was an unusual sight. Not any more.
In the 200 yards along Cresswell Lane, between the A50 flyover and Blythe Business Park, motorists now have at least five chances to crack their axles. Pothole in Cresswell Lane
This length of road is in such a poor state that, as soon as a pothole is repaired, it breaks up again.
Motorists who know this stretch play a dangerous game, of swerving round them.

The plague of local potholes came to a head during the recent snowfalls: if you can’t see a pothole, you can’t avoid it. One poor driver smacked into the huge, snow-covered pothole outside Grange Farm (on Cheadle Road) – and told us all that his van had to be off the road for over a week for repairs.
Residents attending a recent council meeting also complained of the pothole that has suddenly appeared outside Hilltop Farm on the road between the Draycott Arms and Totmonslow; cars swerving round that particular pothole (in a stretch where fast-moving traffic is prevalent), have already caused some real near-misses.

Responsibility for repairs falls to Staffordshire County’s Highways Department who are promising £5million to sort the issue, as of April. The county even has a dedicated Potholes Update webpage!
But, as far as we are thinking, the answer to it all is drive more slowly… the potholes are probably here to stay.

– – –
Armistice commemorations

It may seem a long way off, but in November the country will be remembering 100 years since the end of the First World War. A series of commemoration events across November 11th will look back at the day the nation emerged from all that misery.

Draycott is being invited to take part, as are all other parishes across the UK, by ringing its church bells in a ‘joyful peal’ in the evening on the day.
And the St Margaret’s Bell-Ringing group would welcome any new-comers who feel they could contribute. Recently the group has struggled a bit to find enough members, so volunteering to help them could be your way to take part in the Great-War Armistice Event Day.St Margaret's church in snow

Ring a bell at St Margaret’s!

Anyone can ring a church bell – but you do need some practice, so expressing your willingness is best done now or as soon as possible. Your man to contact is John Clarke, and he will tell you what’s what.

If you are interested more widely in how Staffordshire will remember Armistice Day, there is a free event taking place next Sunday (10th March) in Stafford – the Staffordshire Great-War Commemoration Conference – and all are welcome. If you have an idea, or just want to join in, this could be a meeting worth attending.

Do you have news or information snippets that you think residents would like to see up on this website? If so – email us

Want to comment on any of the items on this page?
Just use the comments box – near the bottom of this page.           (The form will ask if you wish to put in your email address.  You don’t have to – and it is always kept private anyway and never published -, but, if you don’t add your email, that means you might miss any responses to your comment

7 responses to “NEWS: Local Plan / Armistice events / potholes!

  1. I agree with Lee Warburton’s comments: some of the present council seem to have run out of ideas, unless it is within a 500 yard radius of St Margarets church.
    Lets hope the next elections bring forward some new younger forward-thinking applicants, and make this council a success.
    If no change I can forsee the council’s excellent chairman stepping down as well.


    • Councillors stand down...?

      I’m very concerned with the current council and events which are taking place. To my understanding the chairman takes ultimate responsibility for the council actions. If the clerk has been overpaid for so long I don’t understand how RL can interpret the chairman as being excellent. The chairman clearly has no authority over the council and therefore to big him up is ridiculous.
      I agree there needs to be a change and that there are some on the council who should consider standing down. There are plenty of younger members of this community who can make a difference two names come to mind and I hope they both stand next year, they talk about it enough. Come on lads you both know you’ll get support, time for action.
      Time for a change from top to bottom let’s get our community moving forwards there are big challenges ahead for the community and we need strong leadership to ensure we are not rolled over.
      Nick W
      – –
      Editor’s Note
      In fact, the role of a chairman on a parish council is very limited. In reality, s/he is no more than just another councillor, except that s/he has a responsibility to manage the meetings of the council.
      Unlike with district councils, a chairman has no extra rights and shouldn’t really even act as a spokesperson (unless appointed by fellow councillors).
      However, most parish councils ignore this, and treat the chairman as a ‘leader’, which is incorrect. On a parish council, ALL the councillors share equal responsibility (in theory!)


  2. Report potholes

    One needs to keep reporting these. I have reported the pot holes in Cresswell.
    Go to and you can report problems to Staffordshire Highways directly. They give you a reference number and you can even track what stage your complaint is at.
    The Parish Council ask you to make a report to them also, but don’t rely on that alone. The clerk was brilliant at sending in reports but there’s only so much she can do when she is only paid for 20 hours a month!
    Pothole warrior


    • Reporting potholes

      Regardless of who the clerk is they are not paid to report pot holes for 20 hours of the month.
      As a resident you have a duty and the tools to do this yourself.
      If you find it a problem report it, next you will be telling me that it is the clerks job to make a claim for parishioners vehicle damage.
      As we have district Councillors sitting on the parish council I would suggest that we take advantage of then to try and get a resolve.
      Lee Warburton

      Editor’s note
      The reason Lee is quoting “20 hours a month” is that the council clerk is paid for that many hours, to do council work.


      • To be fair… the Draycott Council clerk is mandated by the councillors to officially report local potholes, and to keep an eye on whethre the highways authority is responding to complaints. At the moment, it’s part of her job.
        But I honestly don’t think she spends her whole 20 hours a month doing it…
        I did hear that she occasionally did a driving tour of potholes (in her own time) but I think she’s dropped that.

        However, I pretty much agree with you Lee on the genreal point. If the clerk only has 20 hrs a month, the councillors should lift the responsibility of potholes off her, and even do the liaison with the highways authority themselves. It’s easy enough to do.

        In fact, going forward, the council needs to be better at managing maximum, sensible use of the clerk’s hours. I think everyone would like to see that.
        Mark Stewart


        • Mark, I agree with you. There should be a much better planned allocation of the 20 hours of work for our council’s clerk and this should come from the top. We are in a good position to do this now as we search for a new clerk. Albeit the loss of a clerk.

          Personally I have struggled to understand what is being done in those 20 hours, as, for over 12 months the same issues have continually been on the meeting agenda, to me that shows no work or little work has been completed on these issues.

          During my recent research there was over 100 other parishes in the UK of similar size that only employ a clerk on a 10-15 hour contract.

          I can’t help but think a good change in our council next year should push us in the right direction as a parish.
          We have become very stagnant and tired as a community whereas all other local parishes are flourishing and taking action.
          Lee Warburton


  3. Pot holes are also bad AGAIN outside Blythe Business Park and the junction where Cresswell Old Road meets Sandon Road.
    Swerving not a good idea when you are coming up to the railway crossing!


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