Flintshire residents’ delight as planners block recycling plant

Reporter:

Lois Hough

A CONTROVERSIAL bid to build a recycling plant in the heart of a village has been thrown out.

Residents who stormed County Hall in protest said they were “overjoyed” that plans to convert a Rhydymwyn metals factory into a recycling plant were scrapped.

An application to transform the former Associated Wire Products at Hendre Mine was refused on Wednesday because of concerns about road safety and pollution.

The plant would have recycled 40-60,000 tons of construction and demolition waste a year.

Resident John Thomas warned that more accidents were inevitable on the dangerous A541 if the plans were approved.

He told the Flintshire Council planning committee: “This is the most dangerous road in the whole of North Wales and it will only get worse if you approve these plans.

“There have been three accidents at the junction to this site in the last 12 months with one fatality.”

John White from Cilcain Community Council spoke out about the visual impact on the village.

He said: “Yes the plant is screened by trees but these are deciduous so it will be in full view in winter. We have had nothing but problems with noise from that place and I can see this one going exactly the same way.”

The plant would attract 20 heavy goods vehicles every day from Monday to Friday – 40 vehicle movements every day which would equate to two an hour.

Plans prompted more than 30 letters of objection from residents and a petition with 133 signatures was also submitted to planning officers. Fighting their corner in the hour-long debate was ward member Owen Thomas who argued that two HGV movements an hour was not realistic.

“These drivers will come whenever they want,” he said.

“And whatever goes in must come out.

“That road is so narrow that lorries must virtually stop when they want to pass each other.”

But highways chiefs at the meeting deemed the road “suitable” and planning officers had recommended the application be approved. But councillors voted by a majority to refuse the plans.

Agent John Williams said the applicants were doing a favour to the environment.

He said: “We want to create a modern recycling operation in line with national policies. We need the recycling of waste, especially in Rhydymwyn.”

Speaking after the result, resident Andrea Davies said she was “overjoyed.”

“I’m so relieved,” she said. “It is disgusting that they even considered this in our village.”

See full story in the Leader

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