Protest over quarry plans

Protesters fighting what they say would be the second largest quarry and landfill site in Europe have vowed to take to the streets of mid Norfolk this Saturday.

Protesters fighting what they say would be the second largest quarry and landfill site in Europe have vowed to take to the streets of mid Norfolk this Saturday.

Villagers in Bintree want to show their disgust at proposals to turn what they think would amount to 1.7sq miles of land near the village, including popular woodland, into quarry and landfill sites.

To do so they are to march through North Elmham, Billingford and Bintree on the same day with wheelbarrows.

These are the three villages closest to three proposed quarry sites, including one at Bintree woods put forward by the Forestry Commission.


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They are all part of consultation by Norfolk County Council on where sand and gravel extraction sites and waste tips could go in the future. It is proposed first to extract 5.3 million tonnes of minerals from the Bintree woods site before filling it with waste as a landfill site.

Chris Langford, chairman of Bintree Parish Council, organised the protest.

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He said: “The size of this site would mean that four parishes would be affected for 40 years to come and I do not think anyone would wish this on us.”

He said the proposal would destroy 300 acres of semi-mature woodland, protected by a Site of Specific Scientific Interest designation, right next to the Wensum Valley.

And he added that the three sites combined - more than 1,000 acres - would be twice the size of any other site in the whole of Europe.

A protest group which was set up and created a website, www.bintreeinfo.co.uk, and Mr Langham were disappointed a proposal which would cover Bintree woods had not been pulled out of the consultation like a similar site at Hockham near Thetford by its owner, the Forestry Commission.

Breckland Council has submitted strong objections to both sites to the county council.

The protest is due to start in Billingford at 10am at Festival Road and go to Bintree Road. At 11am it will start in North Elmham and will go from the church to the County School Railway Station.

Finally it will start at the south A1067 junction of Bintree at noon and will

go through the village

to the post office.

w Norfolk County Council's consultation ends on April 25. Anyone wanting to have their say should go to www.norfolk.gov.uk/nmwdf, write to the county council at Planning Services, Norfolk County Council, Planning and Transportation, FREEPOST NC22093/8, County Hall, Martineau Lane, Norwich, NR1 2BR or email ldf@norfolk.gov.uk.

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