PUBLIC MEETING 18 October 2016
SPRINGWELL SOCIAL CLUB
Present: Chair M. Johnson
Treasurer G. Martin
Other committee members H. Fife
Council: Cllr. H. Trueman
Cllr. D. Trueman
Cllr. B. Scapelhorn
Apologies: A. Templeman
Also Present: Thompsons of Prudhoe A. Telfer (Site Manager)
R. Molloy (Environmental Manager)
K. Wood (Planning Consultant)
Bowes Railway Amanda Cuskin
1. The minutes of the previous meeting were agreed
2. Thompsons: Ms. Wood gave a presentation on the planning application that has been submitted to the Council – not yet validated. The main points:
a. This is an application to continue current activities at the Quarry beyond the current approval of 2022. It is hoped a permanent approval will be given. However it is possible that Council will grant a time limited approval or refuse.
b. There are no plans
i. to extend the footprint of the site – plans were explained
ii. move the access
iii. alter the movement of vehicles – they would continue to avoid access/egress through Springwell Village
c. Operations would essentially remain as they are now – no change to hours of operation
Background: originally a sandstone quarry, there is now no extraction of stone. The only quality stone remaining is underneath buildings and there are no plans to remove it. Whilst there was originally backfilling of the quarry with waste materials, Environmental/Government regulations have changed over the years, now demanding recycling of the vast majority of waste to avoid landfill. The resulting minimal backfilling means that the void left by quarrying cannot be filled within the timescale in the current approval, and it would be extremely difficult to estimate when it could be filled with waste under the current regimes- probably never.
Recycling is now the major activity on the site.
Noise: monitored independently, monthly – Thompsons not informed of times. There are three points at which the assessments are done. The Company is working with Environment Agency to work out ways of improving noise levels and plan to construct a 3m bund around screening area. They also plan to close two of openings on the processing building and put roller shutter doors on the other two to suppress noise and dust.
Dust: By far the biggest issue that concerned the residents and the subject of long discussion. It was explained that water jets and that hydraulic dust suppression was being used on the crusher and that roads were swept every two or three days. The overall view from residents was that there should be further measures taken to reduce dust.
It was explained that :
the dust was analysed every month and levels were shown to be within the limits expected of the Environment Agency (200/sq m) – this is a national guideline.
Demolition sites were surveyed for harmful substances and they were not transported to Springwell Quarry.
Occasionally harmful substances were found in household waste from the SITA site and these are removed by hand by Thompsons.
There was a request that dust and noise results be published on SVRA website.
Mrs Aitkin thanked Thompsons for attending the meeting and presenting their information.
Before Thompsons left the meeting Ms. Wood confirmed that discussions with the Council would continue and that Thompson’s would continue to work on their application to take account of residents’ views.
Residents then decided to object to the Application on the grounds of:
• Level of noise and dust
• Non completion of the terms of the current approval resulting in a “change of use” from what would have been land for “public use”
A proposal to include objection on the grounds of “misleading Sunderland Council” was not supported.
No one voted against objecting. No one voted to support the application.
3. BOWES: Temporary works to the perimeter wall will be finished this week.
Funding for permanent works is expected April 2017 – works will take 4-5 weeks. Works being carried out to wagon shop roof and wagons being restored.
Works to improve the tea rooms and toilets are planned.
Bonfire can’t be held this year because of major lighting problems but hopefully 2017 will see its return when walkways and pathways have been improved
Funding has been obtained from Sunderland Council towards fitness scheme/outdoor activities – there will be a free guided walk Tues 25th Oct for over 16 yr olds 10am-lunchtime to Blackfell Hauler House covering history and nature – tour around site on return if participants are interested. Packed lunch required with tea/coffee on return.
Free Halloween “Spooky Trail” organised with Village Hall – meet in Hall in fancy dress and walk to Bowes – challenges with clues on the way and buffet on arrival. 4.30-6pm 31 October
Xmas – details on website. Lots of entertainment/activities £10 per ticket for children Adults free 3-4 December. There will be band and carol singers – still space for more groups of carol singers particularly for 4 Dec.
Resident asked that care be taken with signs at entrance to car park to avoid scaring horses –New, more permanent signage is being commissioned. Resident suggested talking to horse riding community.
In response to a question on the plans to erect fencing: substantial trackwork needs to be done but Bowes is aware that people are used to using the tracks/adjacent land and will consult with the Council to ensure it will be done to legal requirements/access and will continue to provide updates to residents prior to commencing.
4. Police: Thefts: 2 wheelie bins and one of cash; ASB: 2 motorbikes, 4 noise (addressed – private address visited); Youth Disorder: nil; Youth moved from park and will continue to be addressed
PACT meeting in Church Hall 31 October at 6pm – all welcome
5. Village updates:
Seldom Seen – to be replanted next few weeks. Looks like site for additional seat is being prepared
Wooden tubs – being removed because of disrepair
Dog waste bins – will be emptied every two weeks – please don’t overfill
Gulley at bus stop adjacent to NISA store been cleared – further work may be needed
Flooding issues – work now at design stage then will be finalised and costed
Resident congratulated Council on resurfacing work at Meadowfield and Springwell Road
6. Planning – Council has received planning application for what appears to be the first phase of IAMP – includes manufacturing, commercial, hotel, car showroom, retail. Nobody wanted to object
7. Next Meeting: 29 November 2016