Air Quality Workshops
Disley Parish Council Statement of Intent on Air Quality in Disley & Newtown
|Disley Parish Council is fully committed to continue working with Cheshire East Council (the Principal Authority) to improving the air quality along the A6 corridor through Cheshire East Councils’ air quality management programme and action planning.
The Parish Council is also committed directly, and through Cheshire East Council, to both lobby central Government and to work with organisations, agencies, neighbouring local authorities, businesses and the community, to help secure short, medium and long-term solutions to improve air quality along the A6 corridor.
The Parish Council will help to ensure up to date information on air quality is always readily available to inform the local community and road users generally.
The Environment Act 1995 introduced a duty on local authorities to assess and manage air quality within their area. These requirements were supported by policy and technical guidance and a set of detailed timescales by which specified actions should be achieved. In this locality this statutory responsibility lies with Cheshire East Council (CEC) as the principal authority.
In 2010, Cheshire East Council, in applying these duties declared an Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) along the A6 corridor in the centre of Disley. This covers a narrow ribbon area along the A6 running from the Market Street/Buxton Old Road crossroads in the West, to the Junction with Redhouse Lane in the East. A map of the Disley AQMA area can be viewed HERE.
The Disley AQMA was declared based on the exceedance of the annual mean for nitrogen dioxide which is 40µg/m3 .
Following the declaration of an Air Quality Management Area, Section 84 (2) of the Environment Act 1995 requires that a Local Authority draw up an Action Plan to identify the methods by which it intends to address air quality issues. CEC produced an action plan in 2011 and it is presently being reviewed to take account of new AQMAs across the borough.
In March 2018, CEC announced plans to hold planning workshops in April and May. All ideas will be considered and where possible, included in the review of the action plan. Anyone with an interest in air quality is asked to register to attend by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone on 0300 123 5015 before Sunday 15 April 2018. Residents will be asked to provide their name, address and that they are interested in the Disley AQMA. CEC will then send out invitations to the relevant workshop.
More information on air quality monitoring both locally and nationally can be found at:
Why has an AQMA been declared?
Disley is a very popular and well-liked village conveniently located on the edge of the Peak District and Greater Manchester. The A6, a main transport corridor going through the centre of the village, is a very busy commuter route for people travelling by car into Greater Manchester and a busy route from Greater Manchester for visitor to the Peak District. It is also a busy main route for Heavy Goods Vehicles. The topography of the village centre with houses and shops close to the road gives a canyon effect trapping low level pollutants from vehicles causing pollution levels to accumulate.
The impact of the new Manchester Airport Relief Road (MARR) from Hazel Grove through to Manchester Airport, due to open in late summer 2018, with projected increase in traffic on the A6 is now an additional concern for air quality levels in the village which will require close monitoring.
The Disley AQMA is one of 18 AQMA’s declared across the Cheshire East area. A chart showing a comparison of levels with other sites from 2013-2016 can be viewed HERE.
Over 500 declared by local authorities nationally. The Greater Manchester Authorities, including Stockport have an AQMA in place covering the main arterial routes, including the A6 up to the Greater Manchester boundary. This AQMA includes an area around Manchester City Centre. Air quality levels from traffic pollution in city centres are significantly higher than many of the smaller areas declared at local level such as Disley and present even bigger challenges.
Improving air quality from vehicle emissions is a challenge for the future, both at national and local level, right down to individual choices. The problem demands a wide range of actions through national and local transport plans, use of cleaner vehicles, shift from car use to other means of transport and cleaner movement of goods. Whilst improvements in technology and a move to hybrid and electric vehicles are set to have a long-term benefit, the need for short and medium-term air quality mitigation measures at local level cannot be ignored.
What the Parish Council has done so far:
- Since the declaration of the AQMA in 2010 the Parish Council has sought regular updates and improved information from Cheshire East Council on the AQMA monitoring. There are 17 other AQMA’s declared within Cheshire East and Disley is the only one with the benefit of a real time air monitoring analyser located in the village centre giving real time monitoring information.
- A Disley Village Strategy was produced in 2012 setting out transport objectives and policies to help inform future actions for reducing the negative impacts arising from the A6 Main Road. This strategy can be viewed HERE.
- The Parish Council secured a planning condition on the approval for the MARR to apply mitigation measures on the A6 to address the projected increases in traffic before the MARR becomes operational. A Parish Council planning sub-committee was established involving co-opted members from the community to identify objectives to inform this process and to work with Cheshire East Council. Stage One of these mitigation measures are now in place. Stage Two measures in the village Centre are due to take place in spring 2018. The effect of these measures in addressing the projected increase in traffic on the A6 will need close scrutiny and may influence the need for longer term mitigation solutions.
- The Parish Council is an active member of the High Peak and Hope Valley Community Rail Partnership working to secure improvements to rail transport and Disley station, through the Friends of Disley Station Group, to attract a shift to rail travel along the A6 corridor.
- Working alongside the community, a Disley and Newtown Neighbourhood Plan has been produced involving extensive local consultation with the community, which, when adopted will inform future decisions on planning in the village up to 2030. Responding to the many concerns in the consultation relating to the A6 and air quality, a specific air quality policy has been included in the Plan. The Neighbourhood Plan is presently being assesses by an independent examiner prior to a referendum leading to formal adoption by Cheshire East Council. Further details of the Neighbourhood Plan and a copy of the draft Plan can be viewed HERE.
- Working with the community the Parish Council has promoted both cycling and walking in the village through a bi-annual Cycle Festival and national Walkers are Welcome award initiative.
What the Parish Council intends to do
- Continue working with Cheshire East Council and the local community in developing a new Air Quality Action Plan for Disley.
- Work with Cheshire East Council and neighbouring authorities to improve public transport and reduce reliance on car usage on the A6 corridor.
- Through the local MP, lobby central government for solutions on improving air quality from all traffic pollution and through Cheshire East Council review the impact of national air quality strategies and local transport plans.
- Work with the local community, the local school and businesses to promote good practice helping to improve air quality.
- Continue working with the community to promote cycling, walking and other good practice to improve air quality and health and well-being generally.
- Continue working with Cheshire East Council to undertake regular reviews of the air quality in Disley and in particular to continually assess the impact of the MARR on the A6 given the projected increases in traffic.
- Provide links on the Parish Council website to up-to-date information on air quality at both national and local levels and promote local good practice identified through action planning in newsletters and e-Bulletins.
This statement of intent will be used as a working document to inform future opportunities for the Parish Council to help improve air quality along the A6 corridor in the village and will be kept under review and updated with additional information as it is received.
Dated: – March 2018