Plan to restore former quarry for agricultural use hit by objections from villagers

Villagers are battling proposals to restore a former quarry site to agricultural use, saying the scheme would mean years of extra traffic and dust misery for them.

Some residents in the Eggborough area are calling on North Yorkshire County Council to reject the Mone Bros Excavations Limited proposal to infill a depression close to the village of Eggborough and the A19 which was created by former mineral workings.

The calls come just weeks after the High Court dismissed all six grounds of challenge brought by neighbouring Whitley Parish Council over the county council controversially allowing the extraction of pulverised fuel ash at nearby Gale Common, despite traffic and pollution concerns.

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Papers submitted with the Eggborough application by Mone Bros, which has become one of the UK’s largest suppliers of plant equipment, building materials and recycling services to the construction industry, state 47,500m3 of inert material and soils would be needed to restore the site.

Mone Bros in Eggborough

The scheme, the documents state, would need some 40,000m3 of material to be brought to the site, which was worked in the 1990s, “to achieve a suitable restoration profile”.

The documents state the proposals include a number of mitigation measures which would ensure that the infilling operations “do not give rise to any unacceptable environmental or amenity issues, including noise, dust or traffic”.

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The papers add: “The infilling of the historic workings would take place concurrently with the restoration of the sandpit site and so the proposals would not impact upon the approved timescales, which require all work to have been completed by 30 September 2028.

“The proposals would not result in any increase to the permitted maximum number of 108 HGV movements accessing the site each day. The proposed development would allow a sustainable landform to be delivered which can enable a beneficial agricultural after-use.”

However, Eggborough Parish Council said while the firm had claimed the nearest residential property was at a distance of 80m from the site, in reality it was half that distance from a place where diggers, earth-movers and lorries would be operating for nine hours a day.

The parish council has also emphasised the scale of the operation, saying residents in the area already suffered “a constant noise of lorry doors banging, earth-movers, grading machines and diggers".

In its objection to the proposal, the parish council stated: “From any part of the property in or outside there is constant movement and as the development moves closer this will become worse.

“During dry weather especially, because of the nature of the product handled a lot of dust blows in various directions; this will come towards and enter Mount Pleasant at times if the proposal is granted causing dust and pollution.”