# Intention 6: Supporting thriving and sustainable communities and economy
To support thriving and sustainable communities and economy, we will first define what is meant by thriving and sustainable communities, in the context of the National Park Management Plan.
We have defined what is meant by thriving and sustainable communities in the context of the National Park. A draft version of the thriving and sustainable definition was arrived at through combining ideas supplied by the Peak Park Parishes’ Forum (PPPF) and comments received from parishes through the Parish Statement process. This draft version was then consulted on in the last quarter of 2020 and was further developed, with the agreement of the PPPF, using comments received during this consultation. Final comments were invited from our constituent Council in April 2021, which has resulted in a final definition. . Formal endorsement of the definition will be sought at the May 2021 National Park Authority meeting to be used in plans and policies such as the National Park Management Plan and Local Plan.
# Intention 6.1: Improve access to services
To improve access to services we will work with providers to improve broadband and mobile connectivity across the National Park in line with the UK’s Next Generation Access (NGA) standards.
In July 2020 the Heads of Planning for National Parks and National Parks England held a meeting with Mobile UK, the industry body for the four main mobile operators to discuss the new Shared Rural Network programme. This is a joint industry and Government initiative to improve rural mobile coverage which would also give improved broadband coverage through the use of shared masts and sites. The programme started in 2020. To facilitate this the Government is proposing to extend permitted development rights, including within National Parks. National Parks England and National Parks Authorities have expressed concern over the potential landscape impacts, but are willing to respond positively to the need for improved coverage. Further discussions have taken place with mobile providers about the new Shared Rural Network and the use of the emergency services network, being rolled out by EE on behalf of the Home Office, to develop the public mobile phone network by using the same site infrastructure.
An interactive map of the current situation in Derbyshire is available via this link; MAP (opens new window) and Staffordshire via this link: MAP (opens new window). The coverage of the National Park is improving gradually, but communities and businesses are still likely to have difficulties in the most isolated areas.
# Intention 6.2: Support the provision of locally needed housing
To support the provision of locally needed housing we will work through the National Park Management Plan Advisory Group Housing Sub-Group to address the local need for appropriate housing in the National Park.
National Park Officers are still developing the required evidence for the next planning review and discussions with constituent authorities are ongoing regarding statements of common ground and the strategic cross boundary planning issues that need to be addressed in our respective plans.
# Intention 6.3: Enable local businesses to thrive in a way that is compatible and wherever possible enhances the special qualities of the Peak District National Park
To enable local businesses to thrive in a way that is compatible and, wherever possible, enhances the special qualities of the Peak District National Park, we will assist the development of businesses in conjunction with relevant bodies. Linking business support, grant aid, planning and economic development.
Whilst there here has been no progress from the working group during 2020, the District Councils have been responding positively by supporting local businesses. The Authority has maintained a Planning service throughout this period, prioritising business critical applications. Work has commenced on significant business developments on the Riverside Business Park in Bakewell, including the new bridge access to the A6.
Looking forward, the new shared evidence for our respective local plan reviews will include the need for new employment space. Evidence collection for the Local Plan will continue through 2021 with an aim of informing issues and options consultation later in the year.