Casebook: Appeal cases - Waste management. Controls over waste type deemed unreasonable

In allowing an appeal for domestic and non-inert waste processing at a location on Tyneside, an inspector has decided that the council failed to impose appropriate conditions limiting the type of activities that could take place on the site.

Permission had been granted in 1996 for a waste transfer and recycling station for inert waste and a topsoil storage area. A condition had been imposed restricting the storage of materials at the site to topsoil only, but no conditions had been imposed limiting the type of waste that could be recycled. In 1997 permission was granted for an extension to the waste transfer station building and again no such condition was imposed.

In March 2003 permission was granted for a further extension to the waste transfer building station and a condition was imposed limiting the processing to inert waste only. The appellants sought to overturn this condition as unreasonable and unnecessary. The inspector concluded that since there were no limitations on the type of waste processed in the main part of the waste transfer building, there was little justification for trying to limit it in the latest extension.

The council claimed that the type of waste processed was limited by the description of the proposed development. The inspector disagreed, relying on I'm Your Man Ltd v Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions (1998). This judgement indicated that the description of the development permitted by a permission is insufficient to control its nature unless conditions are also imposed, he opined.

Since the council had failed to do this, he concluded that the use of the site in 1996 and 1997 for processing and recycling any materials was permitted provided the use continued to operate in the general industrial use class. He agreed with the appellant that the condition imposed in 2003 was unnecessary and unreasonable.

DCS No: 100039176; Inspector: Alan Robinson; Written representations.

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