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Gwernymynydd quarry plan gets go-ahead despite protests

Published date: 16 January 2014 |
Published by: Owen Evans 
Read more articles by Owen Evans  Email reporter


 

CONTROVERSIAL plans to fill a quarry with inert materials have been approved despite fierce opposition.

An application to fill Cambrian Quarry on Glyndwr Road, Gwernymynydd, by importing and recycling inert materials was narrowly approved at a meeting of Flintshire Council’s planning committee yesterday.

Dozens of worried residents packed into the council chamber to listen to the debate, with several speaking out against the plans submitted by Ash Resource Management.

The focal point of residents’ concern is access to the site which they fear will cause chaos around the A494 Glyndwr Road junction – already a problem spot for motorists and pedestrians.

Concerns were also raised about noise and dust and the effect on the site’s wildlife.

The decision followed months of concerns expressed by campaigners who held a protest in December and another earlier this month.

In total 102 residents sent objections in writing to Flintshire Council, with a letter from a collective of residents, property and landowners also submitted.

Despite the concerns, councillors approved the application by 12 votes to eight at yesterday’s planning committee.

After the meeting Gwernymynydd councillor Nancy Matthews said: “I am disappointed, but I’m now hoping a liaison committee will be set up before anything starts.

“We are still desperately worried about the transport issues.

“I think it was a fair discussion to be honest, but I don’t think the quarry needs restoring and I don’t think it will address the problems that they think it will address.”

During the meeting Cllr Matthews asked members to include conditions including an offering of community benefits and a restriction on working on Saturdays.

Proposals are for the site to be used for agriculture and nature conservation.

Glyndwr Road resident Chris Bradshaw, who spoke against the plans at the meeting, vowed to continue fighting the plans.

Speaking outside the chamber, he said: “I’m very disappointed and I have serious concerns about the traffic.

“We will carry on fighting.”

Gwernymynydd community councillor Kevin Hughes said the community had done all it could to fight the plans, but there was no way to stop the application
During the meeting he spoke against the plans. He said: “We are not a community of nimbys, but we will be living with the consequences for years to come.

“We will be introducing an industrial process into the open countryside.”

Several councillors expressed concerns about the plans during the meeting, with Treuddyn councillor Carolyn Thomas expressing concerns about the impact on the landscape, which is part of an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Buckley councillor Neville Phillips also expressed concerns, describing the access plans as “absolutely appalling”.

Despite these complaints, the plan was approved, with several councillors stating that although there were concerns about the plan, enough conditions were in place to ensure that it was acceptable.

In his report, planning officer Alan Wells, said: “The applicant has demonstrated that the site needs to be restored for stabilisation and for landscape reasons with the minimum amount of material necessary for an acceptable landform which is in line with national policy.”

It adds: “It is considered the highway network could accommodate the proposed vehicle movements and the new access improvements, road widening and access road would facilitate safe access and egress into and out of the site.”

For more news from across the region visit newsnorthwales.co.uk

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