Peak District National Park

Loxley valley Green Belt to be safeguarded under new Sheffield Local Plan

Loxley valley Green Belt to be safeguarded under new Sheffield Local Plan

The Green Belt countryside in the Loxley valley will remain protected from inappropriate development under the 15-year Sheffield planning blueprint that the city council has released for public consultation.

The draft Sheffield Local Plan sets out how the city will build 35,700 new homes to house an expanding population between 2024 and 2039.

Sheffield City Council says it can meet new housing and business needs without pushing the city further into the countryside. The only significant encroachment into the Green Belt is the old Norton Aerodrome site on the south of the city.

The council’s ambition is for a “compact, sustainable city” that meets its development requirements within the current urban area, and largely on well-connected brownfield sites.

The council agreed the draft Plan last month (December 2022) and is now inviting public comments before submitting it to the government Planning Inspectorate for independent examination.

What does the plan mean for the Loxley valley?

For the Loxley valley, this means the countryside between Loxley, Stannington and the Peak District National Park will continue to be protected from inappropriate development if the Plan gets approval.

The river valley from Malin Bridge to the national park boundary at Damflask will remain Green Belt land.

Much of it will also be designated as a Local Wildlife Site following the city’s declaration of a Biodiversity Emergency in 2021.

The valley west of Damflask and Dungworth is part of Sheffield, but it lies within the national park. This area is subject to separate planning policies overseen by the Peak District National Park Authority.

Green Belt does not mean there can be no new development at all. But it would be allowed only in exceptional circumstances when there would be no harm to the countryside environment, (this is why a Planning Inspector threw out the proposed Hepworth site redevelopment two years ago).

Friends of the Loxley Valley supports the Sheffield Local Plan

The Friends of the Loxley Valley committee has decided to support the Local Plan in principle. We will now study it in more detail before submitting comments to the city council.

We would also like to hear what you think about the Plan. If you have views that you think we should bear in mind, please email us at

How you can take part in the Local Plan consultation process yourself

Anyone with an interest in the city’s future is entitled to submit comments on the Local Plan, so there is no reason why you should not take part yourself.

Friends of the Loxley Valley would encourage you to do this, especially if you have strong views about the future of the valley.

The deadline for comments is Monday, February 20th.

The draft Local Plan can be viewed online or in local libraries.

Sheffield City Council is also organising a series of public drop-in sessions.

The council has set up an online consultation portal with the dates of public consultation events. You can also use the portal to read and download all the Local Plan documents, consult an interactive map and register to post your comments:

Loxley valley extract from the Sheffield Local Plan interactive map

This extract from the council’s interactive map shows the Loxley valley. Light green indicates Green Belt land. Green diagonal hatching shows proposed Local Wildlife Sites. Grey indicates residential zones. The brown line is the national park boundary. Please see the map on the council’s online portal if you need more detail.

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