Developer is told not to proceed with biomass plant in Swindon
LEAVE Swindon alone is the stark message councillors, residents and an MP are sending to the developers of the proposed biomass plant.
He is joined by residents and fellow councillors in appealing to the company to withdraw its application.
Swindon Council’s planning committee deferred its decision on whether the proposed development should be approved at a meeting on Tuesday.
An unprecedented number of protesters went to the council chambers at the meeting to voice their outrage at the proposals which would see 30 metre chimneys being used to burn waste wood.
“I call on the company to withdraw their application,” said Coun Heenan (Con, Covingham & Dorcan).
“There is clearly overwhelming feeling from the community and councillors that it’s not wanted and not needed in Swindon.”
“It would be absolutely the perfect solution,” said Coun Moffatt (Labour, Rodbourne Cheney).
“There may be other sites suitable in England but in Swindon there are none.”
Paul Saunders, nominated to represent residents, said he would be ‘chuffed’ if Pure Green left Swindon alone.
“This is not a case of not wanting the biomass in our back yard, it’s a case of not wanting it in the UK at all,” said Mr Saunders.
“I don’t know anyone who would support the company coming here. Cheney Manor will be in the centre of Swindon within the next 10 years. It is only two miles away from the centre. To have a biomass that close to where so many people live is crazy.”
He said a plant by the coast would make more sense where at least 50 per cent of the air pollution could be blown out to sea.
John Newman, 66, of Whitworth Road, said he wanted the developers to look elsewhere because he was concerned for the health of his daughter and wife who both suffer from asthma.
“They should chuck out their plans to come here,” said Mr Newman. “No one wants them to come. Those big chimneys would be releasing all kinds of gases near children.”
North Swindon MP Justin Tomlinson supported the appeal for the applicant to dismiss its plans.
“As a local resident myself I have serious concerns,” said Mr Tomlinson. “The report presented was so poor we just can’t have confidence or trust in it. This application is simply not fit for purpose.
“The applicant, who was clearly taking a bit of punt, will see the overwhelming opposition and hopefully not take the matter any further.”
Pure Green is an offshoot of a European parent, Hippofan, which has a turnover of more than £64m a year and employs 300 people across more than 15 different companies.
Hippofan had not responded by the time the story went to press.
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