The DPA actively engages in planning affairs within the National Park, spanning from Local Plan policies to handling development management.
We assess each planning application and deliberate on our involvement before reaching a decision.
Recent Planning Contributions
Erection of five flexible non-retail Class E (c), (d), (e), (f) and (g) business units, one electric vehicle charge park with cafe building and drive-thru facilities, with associated landscaping and infrastructure
The Dartmoor Preservation Association CIO are opposed specifically to the ”drive-thru” coffee shop element of this development.
In general we welcome investment to the national park and recognise that there will be job opportunities and space for new, small businesses in this development. However, the drive-through coffee shop is unnecessary and out of keeping with Ashburton and the vernacular of a national park.
-Ashburton town is already well-supplied with a number of independent (and hardworking) coffee shops who contribute directly to the local economy and keep this small town feeling vibrant. Some may simply not be able to compete with homogenised product and artificially depressed prices.
-Ashburton is the gateway to the Moor on its Eastern side. The first thing that the visitor will see on arrival is a US-led multi-national corporation, famed for tax avoidance in the UK. This does nothing to enhance the wild natural beauty of Dartmoor, or its reputation.
-Disposable coffee cup are environmentally harmful and are likely to cause litter in Ashburton and in the National Park.
-Once this specific precedent is set there is very little to stop a repetition in the other small stannary towns in and on the Moor. Before long there is the real risk that Dartmoor will be ringed by drive-thrus and fast-food outlets from Tavistock to Okehampton and back round to Ashburton. Useful for the visitor in a rush but very much to the detriment of the National Park and those that live and work here.
– To quote the late Sylvia Sayer the ”defender of Dartmoor; “How wonderful that in this over-urbanized island there are still some untamed places that can arouse fear and wonder in the all-powerful and destructive human species. It was for its unspoiled wilderness that Dartmoor was made a National Park. Once it is denatured it loses everything” Those untamed places shouldn”t come with a take-away coffee.
We advise the DNPA to rescind the drive-thru element of this proposal.