PLANS to extend the operating hours of a large chicken farm in Wrexham have been refused amid concerns about the impact on neighbours.

Permission was given for a facility for up to 225,000 birds at Cinders Farm in Ruabon earlier this year.

The decision was made at a planning meeting in March subject to restrictions being imposed on delivery times to reduce disturbance to people living nearby and alleviate road safety fears.

The company which runs the farm applied to vary the conditions just three months later in a bid to allow 24-hour bird deliveries and collections.

The proposals by Soaltar Limited followed similar restrictions on an egg laying unit at Talwrn Farm in Legacy being successfully lifted on appeal.

However, local councillor Dana Davies said the other facility was much smaller than the one in Ruabon and warned of a negative impact on the surrounding road network.

She said: “It’s interesting that the comparison has been made to the Talwrn Farm site in Legacy for two reasons really.

“This operation is seven times greater than Talwrn Farm.

“Also, the infrastructure in the Talwrn Farm area is completely different to what’s in place here.

“There you’ve got a B-road which is fully marked with two flow direction of traffic whereas here you’ve got a lane. It’s not even a technically classed road.

“When we discussed all the issues in the planning meeting when the application was granted, this condition was put on as a result of the concerns raised around highways.”

The original plans to create the facility were approved by a single vote after 65 objections from neighbours, who expressed worries about how it would impact the busy A539.

The latest proposals were also backed to go ahead by the authority’s chief planning officer after Soaltar claimed the conditions would restrict the running of the business.

In a report, Lawrence Isted said the Planning Inspectorate’s recent decision to overturn the conditions in place at Legacy marked a “material change” in circumstances.

He added it was made in light of animal welfare standards suggested by the RSPCA.

But councillors chose to side with nearby residents, who described the mention of RSPCA guidelines to justify the changes as “emotional blackmail”.

Speaking at a planning committee meeting held earlier this week, Cllr John Pritchard said: “In the last meeting I raised that the A539 was designated as a red route as classified by the Welsh Government. For motorcycle accidents it was the worst in Wales

“The last time we discussed this highways didn’t know anything about it, but it has been confirmed that it one of the worst routes in Wales.”

At the end of the debate, councillor voted by a majority to refuse the application to extend delivery times.