Thursday, 16 July 2015

Quarrying in East Devon >>> Aggregate Industries' plans "completely wrong" >>> further consultation to begin on County minerals plan

The mining and quarrying company Aggregate Industries have applied for planning permission:
Futures Forum: Quarrying in East Devon >>> Aggregate Industries' planning application for Straitgate Farm site >>> consultation to 2nd July

This has been rejected by Ottery Town Council:
Futures Forum: Quarrying in East Devon >>> Ottery Town Council rejects Aggregate Industries' planning application >>> further reports

East Devon's MP, Rt Hon Hugo Swire is also against the proposals:

OTTERY: MP: Quarry plans ‘completely wrong’

16th July 2015

CONTROVERSIAL plans to quarry Straitgate Farm on the edge of Ottery St Mary are “completely wrong”, East Devon MP Hugo Swire has said.

His comments come after local councillors and members of the community united to oppose the development, proposed by Aggregate Industries.

The quarry was branded “absolutely appalling” at a public meeting last month, attended by around 60 concerned residents.

They fear that the local environment could be damaged by the development of the site, with more than 200 lorry journeys a day along the B3180 passing through West Hill. Now Mr Swire has thrown his weight behind calls for the proposals to be thrown out.

In a letter sent to Councillor John Hart, chairman of Devon County Council, he said: “Having now had the chance to consider this matter in some depth, I am of the view that it would be completely wrong to allow the development of this site, not only on account of the disruption it would cause my constituents but also  due to the damage to flora and fauna, including the trees on the site. 

“In addition, I believe that the access routes are wholly inappropriate and will contribute significantly to increased traffic congestion and pollution.”

In a statement issued to Pulman’s View last week, John Penny, estates manager at Aggregate Industries said: “The proposal has been subject to a thorough environmental impact assessment which has examined the potential impacts on residential amenity, wildlife, landscape, transport, archaeology and the water environment.”

The application is due to be discussed by East Devon District Council planning chiefs this week.

OTTERY: MP: Quarry plans ‘completely wrong’ - View from Sidmouth

The area's Councillors Claire Wright and Christine Channon attended a session at County Hall to include the site in the 'minerals plan':

Planning cttee approve Straitgate Farm for consultation as an allocation in the Devon minerals plan

Wednesday, 15 July 2015 0 Comments by Claire
Devon County Council’s development management committee have approved the allocation of Straitgate Farm, on the edge of Ottery for consultation, in the emerging minerals plan.
Myself and Cllr Christine Channon, who represents Aylesbeare, Otterton and other villages near Budleigh Salterton addressed councillors.
Cllr Channon pointed out the traffic implications and that on page 148 of the agenda papers, officers suggested that in the event that Straitgate is undeliverable, a site at Uffculme would have adequate resources to enable sand and gravel supply to be maintained for the plan period.
I argued for Straitgate to be struck from the minerals plan, on the basis that it was NOT deliverable. 
Planning officers have already stated that they do not approve of extending Aggregate Industries processing operation at Blackhill, Woodbury Common, on the basis that it contravenes a raft of national and international designations, such as the EU habitats regulations, which protect rare flora and fauna such as the southern damselfly, nightjar and dartford warbler.
Aggregate Industries have said for years that other sites around are not suitable for processing and they have already formally applied for planning consent to extend the life of the processing plant at Blackhill.
I don’t see how Straitgate Farm area (100 acres to be quarried) can possibly be included in the minerals plan as a standalone site, while there is a stalemate between DCC planning officers and the quarrying company about where processing should take place. Quarrying sand and gravel must be processed and these two things must go hand in hand.
Ripping out 100 acres of high quality agricultural land, damaging the economic capability of a working dairy farm and putting at risk a major aquifer is surely not worth extracting just 1.2m tonnes of sand and gravel. This is so small compared with other quarrying operations.
So, the consultation will begin in August and end in October….  It is really important that you write in, if you are concerned.
Round two at the planning committee in the autumn, after the consultation responses are in and assessed.
Watch mine and Cllr Channon’s presentations, the subsequent debate and our summing up, here -
Development Management - Wednesday 15 July 2015 - Wed, 15th Jul 2015 - 2:00 pm - Devon County Council Webcasting

Planning cttee approve Straitgate Farm for consultation as an allocation in the Devon minerals plan - Claire Wright

Here is info and documentation from the County Council:

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