Committee rejects owner’s case to throw out 15 year landfill site life extension plan in Milton Keynes – MKFM

Posted: September 8, 2020 at 2:55 pm

A landfill site owners plan to add 15 years to the life of its contentious commercial and municipal waste tip has been thrown out.

FCC Environment runs the Bletchley Landfill Site, near Newton Leys, and it applied to Milton Keynes Council to add another 15 years to its operational life.

The tip is due to close in 2022 under permission granted in 2002, but the application would see it taking commercial and council waste until 2037 with another two years to finish off restoration work.

One of the objectors, resident Ethan Kelly-Wilson told Thursdays development control committee that he would be nearing retirement, and his child would be grown up before the site would be returned to nature.

Other objectors also made the case that residents, especially in Newton Leys, had brought their new homes on the understanding that they would only have to put up with the site for a few more years.

Adding 15 years would have a devastating impact, said Bletchley and Fenny Town councillor Ed Hume.

Mat Nicholson, the estates manager for owner FCC Environment, said he had concerns over the manner which some of the information was presented to the committee.

He claimed that it was in a manner not to give the full picture.

He said that the site, which employs 15 people, is regionally important, making up one quarter of the landfill space that is left in the whole of the south east of England.

Mr Nicholson said none of the statutory consultees had objected but that was not highlighted to the committee.

He claimed that consultees like the Environment Agency and the councils own environmental health officers were not given equal weight to other issues.

He admitted there had been a large number of recent complaints but claimed there is a disparity between complaints and reality.

Mr Nicholson added that if the life of the site was not extended then it would not be possible to restore the site as agreed. And he said it would cause issues with site gases and water.

But Tracy Darke, the councils director of economy, growth and culture, said councillors had to make a judgement on where the planning balance lies by taking everything into account.

Residents expected to have a country park in 2023 but in 2035 we could be in exactly the same position.

There is no clarity around when we get to the end date anyway.

Ward councillor Emily Darlington (Lab, Bletchley East) said having a landfill site in Milton Keynes until 2037 would go against the citys aim to be the greenest city.

And other speakers said they did not want Milton Keynes to be an exporter of other peoples rubbish when the council is aiming to send nothing at all to landfill.

Cllr Paul Trendall (Lib Dem, Campbell Park & Old Woughton) said: MK isnt everyones dumping ground.

Councillors voted unanimously to reject the application. FCC Environment will have the opportunity to appeal to the Government to get an inspector to overturn the committees decision.

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Committee rejects owner's case to throw out 15 year landfill site life extension plan in Milton Keynes - MKFM

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