Study fuels health fears

Westby Lane awsworth residents campaigning about waste recycling plant.
Westby Lane awsworth residents campaigning about waste recycling plant.

A COUNCILLOR has called for bigger exclusion zones around composting dumps after seeing worrying research into potential effects on people’s health.

A composting plant is planned for farmland off Westby Lane – bordering the villages of Awsworth and Cossal – which has sparked uproar from residents on health grounds.

Kimberley town councillor Charlie Shaw said that in Germany, Denmark, Austria and other European countries, homes and workplaces must be at least 500m away from composting plants, but in the UK the exclusion zones are just 250m.

Cllr Shaw said: “I am not so sure that 250m is adequate.

“It’s not going to be in an ideal circumstance in the dip where this plant is planned.

“I would have thought this needs looking at by experts to determine that the site is ok and the fungal spores can be contained within 250m.”

Nottinghamshire County Council highways has objected to the plan because of access problems to the site.

It has said that it would be dangerous for 32-tonne trucks carrying the compost to travel to and from the proposed plant down the narrow country lane and along sharp bends through Awsworth.

A smaller composting plant is planned for land near the sewage works in Newthorpe.

Both plans have been submitted to Broxotwe Borough Council by Alfreton-based firm HW Martin Ltd.

The Awsworth Tenants’ and Residents’ Association have posted leaflets in the village and held protests near the site last month.

Association secretary Emma Torrance told the Advertiser that a similar site in Bilsthorpe was recently turned down because planners could not prove airborne pollutants would not have an adverse effect on people’s health.