Traffic is still a concern at mine

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CONCERNED Smalley residents had a chance to view plans for a new 400,000 tonne mine at an open exhibition.

A planning application has been submitted to Derbyshire County Council to mine 3,200 tonnes of coal a day near Denby Common, which will have an access road forcing traffic from the site through the centre of Smalley.

Last Thursday an exhibition was held at the Denby cricket club pavilion, hosted by mine planning agents Silkstone Environmental Solutions and showed detailed maps of the proposals.

Managing director of Silkstone Mark Barrett was at the event to answer questions. He said: “At the moment we import an awful lot of coal from abroad, by doing this we will be saving 400,000 tonnes of coal from being imported by working it and mining it ourselves.”

Further details of the open cast plan were revealed at the exhibition.

The mine will be worked for three years in total.

Physical coal extraction will take place for two and a half years working from the south to the north, towards Denby Common.

An eight-metre screening mound will shield the perimeter of the mine from view and is expected to dampen noise levels.

On restoring the land two small forest areas will be planted between Denby and Smalley, as well as a lake to the south.

Mr Barrett claims full noise assessments have been carried out and the site is within the national 55 decibel limit.

But Smalley residents’ traffic fears for heavy vehicles using the A608 were not allayed by the plans.

Neil Paget from the Smalley Action Group against the plans said: “The residents still strongly object to the plans.

“There is no other way traffic can leave the site but through Smalley.

“It’s going to be a nightmare for the resident of Smalley and for the Denby residents living close by.”