The most recent permission, dating from 1996, required mineral extraction to cease at the end of 2006 and restoration to be complete 12 months thereafter. The appellants sought to extend the period of extraction by another five years, with three years to restore the site. They asserted that because the scheme essentially comprised a continuance of existing mining activities, it could not be held to involve a major development.
The inspector concluded that extraction of an extra 400,000 tonnes of limestone and 220,000 tonnes of vein mineral along with 227,000m3 of imported fill involved a major development in the national park. Her assessor saw no overriding need to continue extraction. It was important to achieve restoration in the short rather than longer term due to the quarry's adverse visual impact, she held.
DCS Number 100-069-759
Inspector Bridget Campbell; Inquiry