Need for waste plant outweighs failures

Various appeals for the extraction of sand and gravel from land in Oxfordshire and the establishment of a materials recycling facility have been approved after the operators demonstrated a need for the development.

The appellants proposed to extract 490,000 tonnes of sand and gravel as well as 42,000m3 of underlying clay for use in site engineering. They claimed that past restoration of the quarry had not accorded fully with relevant planning permissions because the site had been overtipped with inert and other waste. Dismissing the appeal would lead to the firm's financial failure and so restoration would not occur despite a previously tipped area being subject to enforcement action, they argued.

The inspector expressed distaste at the appellants' suggestion that planning permission should be granted for a potentially harmful use to ensure full restoration of the land and rectify previous breaches of planning control. He found that this argument did not carry significant weight.

On the planning merits, however, he agreed that there was a need for further mineral extraction and disposal of inert waste. He noted that the materials recycling facility would receive commercial and industrial waste with up to 60 per cent being recycled and the remainder landfilled. In his view, this type of facility was supported by national planning policies and the council's waste strategy and was worthy of support.

DCS Number 100-050-806

Inspector Andrew Newman; Inquiry.

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