Row erupts between bidders for new Northop crem site


Jamie Nield-Siddall

A ROW has erupted between rival bidders as the heat over a controversial crematorium race reaches boiling point.

Edward Davies, who submitted plans 12 months ago to build the facility in Starkey Lane, Northop, has said Flintshire Council has “no reason” not to go ahead with his application.

Mr Davies said he has already reviewed the site proposed by rival bidder Memoria Ltd, who lodged a last-minute bid to build a crematorium at Tyddyn Starkey, between Kelsterton Lane, Oakenholt Lane and Mold Road, near Northop – just two miles away from Mr Davies’ site.

Mr Davies yesterday told the Leader he hopes his application will be accepted soon, adding: “The site they (Memoria) have come up with we have already assessed. It is not suitable for purpose.”

But Jamieson Hodgson, business development director at Memoria, disputed the fact that Mr Davies had ever reviewed their proposed site.

He also said Memoria believe it has the best site to meet the planning and operational requirements of such a facility for Flintshire.

“We’ve seen no evidence that Mr Davies previously considered our chosen site,” he said.

“We can only assume that Mr Davies is referring to the fact he submitted an alternative site selection document in December 2013. 

“Incidentally, there is no direct reference to our chosen site within the document.

“In addition, we would also like to emphasise that this document was submitted six months after the original submission of Mr Davies’ application and after he had purchased his chosen site.

“As such, we believe the contents of this document to lack objectivity and be fundamentally flawed as a result – even if it fails to assess our site.”

Mr Davies has said the site was accessed by Peter Brett Associates, who were recruited by Flintshire Council. 

“We filtered that site out in the early stages,” said Mr Davies. 

Andrew Farrow, chief planning and environment officer at Flintshire Council, said: “The Tyddyn Starkey site has been reviewed by planning officers and we have also asked Peter Brett Associates to look at certain aspects of the proposed development.”

An online consultation in relation to Memoria’s application will end today.

A spokesman for Flintshire Council said: “Neighbouring properties to the application site have been sent letters asking for their views within a statutory 21 day period, but the wider consultation is ongoing and there will also be a site notice and press notice.

“The council’s data base extending the date for the receipt of comments following publicity by way of press/site notices will be updated accordingly but comments can be made on the application up until the day it is to be determined by the planning committee.”

It has also said despite ending online, the consultation process will be ongoing as a site notice will go up in the area.

Mr Davies said the site selected by Memoria would have an impact on the village of Northop due to traffic congestion.

Last week Mr Hodgson reiterated his views that if his application was approved, it would cause less traffic congestion than if Mr Davies’ proposal was accepted.

Flintshire Council is reviewing Memoria’s application and said it has not yet set a date for decision to be made.

Mr Davies said that, despite his frustrations at the decision to postpone the decision on his bid, he is “sitting tight” and confident his bid will be approved.

See full story in the Leader

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