More developers will pay towards protecting Cannock Chase

A new scheme which sees more developers pay towards protecting Cannock Chase has been approved by councillors.

Plans to see more developers pay towards protecting Cannock Chase have been approved
Plans to see more developers pay towards protecting Cannock Chase have been approved

The scheme was approved by Stafford Borough Council and could raise more than £6million for enhancements to the area of outstanding natural beauty.

Currently any development within eight kilometres of the Cannock Chase Special Area of Conservation (SAC) has to contribute money to alleviate the pressure on sensitive parts of this popular area.

However, as part of the new plans, the boundary line for contributions will almost double from April 1.

It would mean any houses being built within 15 kilometres would be liable for a payment towards the work of the SAC.

The funds will be earmarked for improving footpaths, bike trails, upgrading car parks and providing better visitor information.

Councillor Mike Smith, deputy leader at Stafford Borough council, said: "We are fortunate to have an area of internationally important heathland on our doorstep and these proposals will help the partners in the SAC to protect, conserve and restore this beautiful area.

"The Chase has grown in popularity and will continue to do so.

"As well as being an area of outstanding natural beauty Cannock Chase provides a benefit to the physical and mental health of many residents and visitors.

"It is right that, with an increase in homes being built and therefore more people living in the borough, developers make a contribution to help protect and preserve the more sensitive areas.

"That work will include improving footpaths, introducing appropriate bike trails, upgrading car parks and providing more visitor information."

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