Firm pulls the plug on compost dump

Westby Lane awsworth residents campaigning about waste recycling plant.

Westby Lane awsworth residents campaigning about waste recycling plant.

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VILLAGERS are celebrating after the firm planning to build a compost dump near Awsworth withdrew its planning application.

But a plan for a smaller plant from the same developer near the sewage works off Halls Lane, Newthorpe, is still ‘live’ according to Nottinghamshire County Council.

The proposed Westby Lane plant would have seen 12 32-tonne lorries travel back and forth through Awsworth each week, leading to grave concerns from residents that the roads in the village could not handle it.

The local residents’ and tenants’ association mobilised a campaign against the plan with dozens joining protests near the proposed site in Babbington after Alfreton-based HW Martin’s plans were revealed in May.

Many of the campaigners were concerned about health risks from airborne pollutants and Awsworth parish councillor Kurt Whitten said he was ‘over-the-moon’ at the news that the plan had been aborted.

“It’s absolutely brilliant news,” he said.

“I am not against things like that in principle but where they were planning to put this one was totally the wrong place. It was ridiculous.

“I think everybody in Awsworth will be pleased with this.”

A Nottinghamshire County Council spokesman confirmed that the highways department had objected to the plan because of the difficulty of access along country lanes.

This led to the firm withdrawing its application.

County councillor for the area Ken Rigby said he has been fighting for a 7.5-tonne limit through Awsworth to force lorry drivers to use the bypass built nearly a decade ago.

He said that drivers’ satnavs were sending them through the village.

“I’m very, very pleased,” he said. “I was concerned about the health grounds and about the lorry movements through Awsworth.

“I am working very hard to try to get a limit in place.”

The county council spokesman confirmed that HW Martin’s application for a composting plant in Newthorpe is still in the system and would be considered at a later date.

The A610 near Newthorpe means the trucks will only have to pass over a small section of bridleway to access that site but residents nearby are still concerned about the plan – particularly because the proposed site sits next to a sports ground where various local teams play.