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Aggregate Industries has 'no plans' to reopen old quarry

Mar, 16 2012


(UK) -- PLANS to tighten up conditions at a disused quarry in Mabe have caused neighbours to worry it may reopen.

Aggregate Industries UK Ltd have to carry out a review of an old mineral permissions (Romps) application for Kessell Downs Quarry at Halvasso to avoid losing its planning consent dating from the Forties.

Romps' legislation reviews old mineral planning permissions to ensure quarries and mines are operating to modern environmental conditions or to have dormant quarries re-assessed prior to reopening.

Nearby residents have raised objections to the application, fearing if the quarry reopens they will suffer.

But the company told the West Briton it currently has "no plans" to reopen it.

Residents' concerns relate to noise, traffic and effects on wildlife among a range of other issues should the quarry become active again.

As part of the application the company has also offered an option of creating a new access road via Gwendra.

Resident Helen Waplington, writing on the Cornwall Council planning website, said: "The proposal to redirect traffic through the narrow lanes would be extremely dangerous.

"I am horrified to think our beautiful, safe, peaceful community could be turned into a dangerous, polluted place in which no one wants to live."

Edward Trewhella added: "The noise will be extremely intrusive, in fact devastating. We can expect high levels of dust, noise, odours, fumes."

Suzanne Nicholls said: "We do not need this monstrosity on our doorstep."

BF Adventure, a charity using an adjacent quarry to help disadvantaged people, is also concerned about the prospect.

Adrian Roberts, chief executive, said if the quarry reopened and the new road was used, it would probably lead to the closure of BF because of the noise and disturbance.

The parish council noted the conditions, put forward by the company. But it is going to point out to Cornwall Council that homes previously unoccupied where the new road is proposed are now lived in.

Chairman Roger Phillips said: "This should have been decided ten years ago. It was delayed and never came back.

"All quarries, whether running or derelict, have to go through it.

"It is not to say they are opening again, that's why they put it on the back-burner ten years ago.

"They have been pushed into doing something now. Unless they get Romp permission, they lose their consent."

John Penny, regional estate manager for Aggregate Industries, said: "We are going through the process to renew the existing permissions to keep them alive.

"But we have no plans to reopen Kessell Quarry for the foreseeable future."

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