CAMPAIGNERS have vowed to fight against plans to build a large chicken farm on the outskirts of Wrexham.

A planning application has been submitted for four large chicken sheds at Cinders Farm in Ruabon, where up to 225,000 birds would be reared for meat production.

However, local residents have started a campaign calling for the proposals to be rejected over concerns the rearing houses, measuring 110 metres long and 25 metres wide, would create an 'eyesore'.

They have also raised fears about the welfare of the chickens, as well as the impact on the road network.

Samantha Gibson, representing the group, said: "Everyone I have spoken to about this feels strongly against it. We believe the nature and landscape of Ruabon would not support such a large development. Intensive chicken farms can be an eyesore in a rural area.

"Barn raised poultry suffer cramped and unnatural conditions and the public are more and more steering away from 'factory' style livestock farming in their shopping choices.

"There will be an increase in lorry movements which could clog up local and main roads. We are also concerned about the potential for air, noise, light and water pollution. Might there be an adverse effect on house prices too for these reasons?"

Applicants Soaltar Farming said they want to create a farm that is environmentally conscious and creates new jobs.

They added that the development would be part of the Red Tractor Food Assurance Scheme, which inspects food safety, animal welfare, hygiene and environmental protection.

Natural Resources Wales has already granted an environmental permit to allow the company to run the farm.

On a website outlining the proposals, Soaltar said: "The aim is to create a farm that is environmentally conscious, landscape friendly and fits well within the context of the local economy. Providing jobs and satisfying the local poultry demand is our priority.

"The systems to be applied to the proposed livestock rearing farm, including those ensuring the health of the birds and the use of the litter as a fertiliser, are those set out in the European Commission’s Reference Document on Best Available Techniques.

"New landscaping (woodland planting, hedgerow planting and grass seeding) will be completed during the first planting season following occupation of the proposed buildings.

"Under the assurance scheme the manager and assistant managers employed on the site will have the necessary qualifications and husbandry skills to manage a modern livestock farm."

If planning permission is granted, the construction of the buildings is expected to last for approximately four months.

The campaign group is encouraging members of the public to comment on the application on the Wrexham Council planning website using the reference P/2018/0577.

A Facebook page for the group already has almost 100 members.

Last week planning committee members shelved proposals for two similar intensive poultry farming units at Mulsford Farm in Sarn.

Nicholas Claffey, who is a community councillor in Pen-y-Cae, said: "As someone who lives in a neighbouring village, I seriously hope that the authorities listen to the people of Ruabon and the surrounding villages and reject these plans too.

"These chicken farms produce a lot of waste which is bad for our environment, have a higher likelihood of producing contaminated meat and also, and most importantly, are repulsive conditions for chickens to be living under.

"The only possible positive for this would be if it created local jobs, but there are no reassurances about this, either."