Residents 'let down' as they face years of extra quarry lorry journeys

Villagers who face another six years of quarry traffic say they feel disappointed and let down over the granting of planning permission for an extension of the operation.

Residents have complained that the narrow roads of Condover are unsuitable for heavy goods vehicles
Residents have complained that the narrow roads of Condover are unsuitable for heavy goods vehicles

This week Shropshire Council's south planning committee granted approval for the continuation of quarrying from Gonsall Quarry.

Residents say their main concern is the quarry traffic that travels on the country lanes and through the village of Condover.

Speaking at the planning meeting Councillor Dan Morris, who represents Burnell division, said the proposals would result in an unacceptable continuation of large HGV movements through Condover village and conservation area.

“The applicant’s mitigation proposals are considered insufficient. The route for the quarry material goes over a Grade II listed bridge, past the village hall, post office and primary school.”

Councillor Morris said the applicant’s impact assessment had only considered noise and not the impact of the “consistent flow of lorries” on the roads, conservation area, historic buildings or lives of residents.

Speaking after the meeting Condover Parish Councillor, Roger Nash, said the community felt let down that it was not going to see a new access road from the A49 to the quarry, bypassing the village.

"It is something that has been talked about for at least a decade," he said.

"Now we are told it is not economic.

"We are also disappointed about the manner in which the decision was taken. Those against the application had sent their objections to councillors on the planning committee but many of them were unable to go to the meeting so some of those who made the decision had not seen those documents and were not au fait with this application."

Highways officer Mark Wootton told the meeting said that while the current access arrangements were “not ideal”, the expected impact on the village road network did not meet the high threshold to justify refusal on highways grounds.

Richard Parton, owner of Salop Sand and Gravel, told the committee that local supply of building material was reliant on the expansion of the quarry.

The committee also heard from the company’s agent, who said approval of the scheme would result in a contribution of more than £65,000 from the company towards local infrastructure improvements.

He added that the current application for 110,000 tonnes to be extracted per year, while higher than the current permitted levels of 50,000 tonnes, was significantly below historic annual volumes of up to 200,000 tonnes.

Councillor Vince Hunt proposed approval of the application in line with the recommendation of planning officers, and this was supported by six voted to five.

Top Stories

More from the Shropshire Star

UK & International News