Essex Council to rule on Rochford waste plant expansion plan amid parish council objections

ESSEX Council will decide this week whether a waste plant in Rochford can be extended.

James Waste Management LLP has applied for permission from County Hall to expand its operation at the Purdeys Industrial Estate.

The firm wants to build an extension to its existing Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) – a specialised plant that receives, separates and prepares recyclable materials, to be sent on to manufacturers.

The new MRF would cover more than 2,000 square metres.

The company also wants to create a new outside waste transfer area, including a covered tipping area and picking line.

Council planning documents say this extra space ‘would facilitate an expansion/diversification of the applicant’s business, into skip hire’.

Rochford Parish Council has formally objected to the proposal, citing three reasons.

The first is that it believes the proposal will attract more birds to the area.

Therefore, it wrote, “There is an increased risk of bird strikes on planes, as the area is not covered to deter scavenging birds.”

However, Southend Airport was also consulted and did not raise any objection.

The parish council added that the Sutton Road and Purdeys Way area was ‘already heavily congested’ and that the proposed changes would likely lead to even higher numbers of HGV journeys.

It also complained that, “there are still a number of unresolved complaints about this site in relation to smells and noise.”

Rochford Council raised the same three concerns, but stopped short of formally objecting.

Planning files show surrounding properties, which were specifically consulted, also raise concerns about the number of birds which are attracted to the site and about ‘nauseating’ smells which come from the facility.

Another complaint raised during the consultation was that, “Purdeys Industrial Estate already suffers from extreme fly infestations and this will only get worse.”

Council officers have recommended that Essex Council’s Development and Regulation Committee approves the planning permission.

But councillors will deliberate and vote in a public meeting in Committee Room 1 at County Hall this Friday, October 25, between 10.30am and 2pm.

Charles Thomson

Chief Reporter Email: [email protected]