Recycling developer’s planning u-turn fury

A RECYCLING plant has hit out at a planning committee for reversing its approval of a major expansion which could have created 58 jobs.

Lincolnshire County Council approved Bowmans Waste’s application to install a new anaerobic digestion plant treating commercial waste at its Addlethorpe site in November.

Following the decision Bowmans spent £250,000 on equipment and hired 28 new employees only to have the decision reversed because councillors felt the plant could not meet odour mitigation conditions imposed on the application.

Developer Kenneth Ellis was unaware the application had been reconsidered and incensed to hear it was overturned.

He said: “We had won the planning application and now they’ve found some obscure way not to allow it.

“I had taken on 28 jobs and started construction and now I’ve got a lot of disappointed people.

“Their objections are unfounded and we had proved this at the previous planning meeting - we had an odour assessment done twice and passed both of those.

The new facility would have been one of the first of its kind in the UK treating commercial waste and producing electricity.

Mr Ellis claims to have support from local caravan sites and Butlins, which could have benefited from cheap and accessible waste disposal.

He believes the waste will now have to travel miles across the county, clogging up road networks to be dumped at a landfill site in North Hykeham.

Although many will be disappointed by the loss of jobs and an accessible waste treatment plant, others have supported the decision.

Local residents and Addlethorpe Parish Council had submitted objections to the original application based on fears that it would pollute the surrounding area with unpleasant aromas.

Coun Colin Davie had been surprised that these views had been ignored when the application was first heard and was pleased to see the decision over-turned.

He said: “I’m pleased that the planning committee heard the views of the local community as expressed by the parish council and has come to the only decision that could be reached as recommended by its officers.”

Mr Ellis plans to take the matter to judicial review but added that he fears the process could take several years.