Planning permission granted for the use of rail sidings near Bedford

It is to transport material to restore Elstow South Quarry
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Planning permission to use rail sidings near Bedford to transport material to restore Elstow South Quarry has been granted.

The permission was for the operation of three sidings, a concrete offload road and internal site access roads for the import of materials by rail for onward transportation from the site by road (via Green Lane) to the Elstow South Quarry restoration project.

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Bedford Borough Council’s planning committee heard on Monday (December 12) that Marston Moreteyne Parish Council had objected to the use of the sidings in Stewartby.

The siteThe site
The site

Councillor Jane Walker (Conservative, Clapham) said: “I saw that there was a condition that they could only bring in sand and soil.

“Does that condition satisfy the complaints of Marston Parish Council, because they were worried that all sorts of things would be coming in?

“So are they happy now with that condition?” she asked.

Roy Romans, planning officer, said: “We don’t normally go back to individual objectors to see whether the conditions overcome [their objections]

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“We believe that they do, and the condition is quite restrictive.

“The reason we’ve put a restrictive condition along the lines that we have is the application had an environmental assessment as part of the application.

“That environmental assessment relies upon an assessment against a similar facility importing sands and soils, but there’s been no further assessment for other types of material.

“Which is why we therefore restricted it to what’s been assessed.

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“It’s not to say that other materials might not be acceptable, but the condition puts the council in the position of being able to look at that should any applications come to vary that condition.

“So we think it does meet the parish council’s concerns.

I think that those revolved principally around that they thought [the applicants] could import rubbish again, or material that might have much more of an impact than inert soils and sands,” he said.

“So they’re only bringing in inert no polluted material, is that right?” asked councillor Martin Towler (Conservative, Riseley).

Mr Romans confirmed that was the case.

The committee voted to grant permission, subject to planning conditions.