Thank you for your interest in this role, which places the successful candidate right at the heart of the future prosperity of two beautiful, busy and varied districts covering most of the Peak District National Park.
While we would definitely rather not have been in the news this summer, you may have seen coverage of the multi-agency response to the situation in Whaley Bridge, where residents were evacuated due to the risk of a dam being breached. Our dedicated workforce was heavily involved, with our retiring Executive Director for Place, Dai Larner, chairing the recovery group.
With a strategic Alliance that’s been in place for over 11 years, High Peak and Staffordshire Moorlands councils have a shared workforce delivering two distinct but complementary strategic plans. The sheer variety of work is a factor that’s often mentioned as a big plus by our staff; in many ways, working here is a ‘two for the price of one’ in terms of professional development.
The Local Plan for High Peak has been adopted, and Staffordshire Moorlands’ Local Plan will be in place by the time the new Executive Director takes up the role. So you’ll drive forward two councils’ development ambitions, meeting the demand for new homes and economic growth across two geographies. Both include parts of a national park; they encompass small market towns and areas of deprivation and affluence; and each looks towards a neighbouring city – Manchester in the case of High Peak, Stoke-on-Trent for Staffordshire Moorlands. They also both enjoy excellent relationships with their respective counties, Derbyshire and Staffordshire.
Glossop has seen major investment in recent years, and fellow High Peak town Buxton is through to the second phase of the £675m Future High Streets Fund, with plans afoot to improve the main shopping area so it can better capitalise on the town’s rich architectural heritage and strong national profile as a visitor destination.
At the heart of the Staffordshire Moorlands, Leek has also become something of an exemplar – bucking the national trend to become a bustling town, with high shop occupancy rates and a thriving market.
While we’ve achieved a lot, there’s still much to do. As a result, it’s the perfect time to be joining us. There’s one clear task, and that’s to get the Local Plans delivered. This is a great chance to really get our towns buzzing. I want to hear from people with energy, who are able to take people with them and are ready to take a senior role from the start. I’m looking for someone who’s demonstrated they can get things done, and can work with partners locally and nationally to deliver both in terms of housing and employment space.