An application from Hills Quarry Products to extract 2.5 million tonnes of sand and gravel from Fullamoor Plantation, between Clifton Hampden and Culham, was refused permission by Oxfordshire County Council’s planning and regulation committee earlier this week.
The proposal included an access road, a processing plant, offices with welfare accommodation, a weighbridge and a silt water lagoon system. The applicants proposed to restore the site for agriculture and nature conservation, including lakes with recreational afteruses.
Committee members heard that objections had been received from the local parish councils, South Oxfordshire District Council, the local county councillor, the Oxford Green Belt Network, the Campaign to Protect Rural England and more than 500 local residents.
A council planning report said that concerns over visual impacts had been alleviated by an improved landscape mitigation scheme, and that a flood risk assessment had demonstrated that the development would not increase the risk of flooding.
However, planners recommended that the plans be refused, citing severe traffic impacts in terms of delays, safety and amenity, while its transport strategy and policy team raised concerns over conflict with a potential route for a new road and river crossing.