Paul Schofield 0

Harewood & East Keswick industrial bio-waste processing plant development protest

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WE call on Leeds City Council to defer the planning application for change of use at New Laithe Farm, Harewood (12/00435/FU - Leeds City Council) A planning application has been submitted to Leeds City Council to change the surrounding land from agricultural land to industrial and at the same time to re-designate a 5000 sq metre plus farm shed as a composting plant. The proposed development will process up to 50,000 tonnes of biodegradable waste each year with up to eight large trucks and waste liquid tankers visiting the site approximately one every hour, seven days a week. Materials would be delivered from 6am weekday mornings and 9am at the weekend and would be spread on local farm land continuously apart from Sunday. Mr Paul Schofield, one of many people living in the affected area said: “Like many of us who have lived in this rural area for many years, we accept normal farm operations. After all cow muck and countryside are all part of the rural scene. 

"It is not the usual smells of rural life that we object to, it is the stink of biochemical industrial waste spread on the surrounding land for up to 364 days a year.  

“This proposed site will take in bio-waste from Tadcaster Breweries and other sites, plus we suspect the highly noxious industrial liquors from Northern Disposals to which we have already been subjected over the last four or five years, resulting in very many complaints from residents for miles around. “The stench from industrial bio-waste is not rural but chemical. On windless days it hangs like a toxic cloud, you can’t even get rid of it by opening a window. The detrimental environmental and personal quality of life to all who live in the locality will be a disaster for the whole area. “Irrespective of the potential effect upon property values, which are already falling, the continuation of clean fresh air is a fundamental to everyone’s life; after all there is not much else which is free these days! “The proposed waste processing site will affect the communities of Harewood, East Keswick and Bardsey and particularly North Leeds which has already been subjected to previous obnoxious smells. “On one memorable occasion in the past rotting chicken feathers were spread upon the land, resulting in schools and restaurants being closed in North Leeds due to the stink. “The site entrance to New Laithe Farm is on Harewood Avenue, a busy two lane road which will have to sustain extra heavy goods vehicles and tankers, year upon year. “In addition to the stink a lot of local people including a nearby school have voiced their concerns regarding traffic safety and increased delays caused by heavy goods vehicles and tankers entering and leaving the proposed waste site. “This location is wholly unsuitable for a development of this type, with a school adjacent to the site, a village community nearby and a busy main road which cannot sustain the proposed increase in heavy traffic. The added vehicular traffic will also pose a serious safety issue, with poor access to the farm and slow moving vehicles causing frustration to drivers.  “If this proposal goes ahead it is certainly going to put off a lot of hikers, bikers, and riders who enjoy the fresh air and rural beauty of this area, not to mention the many thousands of people who visit concerts, events and attractions nearby  and perhaps prospective house buyers.”

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