Plans to restore Boxgrove Quarry and import nearly one million tonnes of material over five years has sparked residents’ fears about the impact on local roads and the surrounding countryside.
Inert Recycling has put in a fresh scheme to restore the quarry off Tinwood Lane, Boxgrove, but residents feel the proposed 84 lorry movements per day in and out of the site via the A285 at Halnaker would add strain to local traffic.
Chichester North county councillor Mike Hall, who is a Boxgrove resident, said: “More than 940,000 tonnes of inert material will go into the site. Is it sustainable in this day and age to carry that type of waste from urban areas into the countryside? I don’t believe it is. It is an industrial process.”
Mr Hall said any vehicle movement added to the local roads is going to make a difference.
However, managing director of Inert Recycling Keith Larner said: “With regards to lorry movements, we have spoken with highways. I do not think using that access road will make any difference to residents, because it is a main A-road.
“A lot of the material we anticipate will come from the Chichester area. It is possible material may come from other areas, but it is an unknown quantity for us. Chichester and Bognor are busy development areas. The more local the material, the better it is for us.”
Inert Recycling is an established waste management company specialising in the inert waste market and is based in Southampton. The company said it took 18 months to compile the planning application.
As well as restoring Boxgrove Quarry, an ancillary recycling facility will be used east of the site to pre-screen incoming loads.
This is to produce final restoration soils for the quarry and soils for the improvement of the poorly-restored workshop area.
The recycling facility will also produce products such as crushed concrete and recycled aggregate for export.
Although the site is about 100 metres south of the South Downs National Park, it is not in a conservation area.
Boxgrove Quarry was first worked in the late 1960s. Since then there have been several works to restore the quarry and implement infill schemes, as well as mineral extraction.
The most recent plans were to complete the restoration of the quarry up until December 2006, but it was never determined.
Boxgrove Parish Council chairman Rosemary Saunders said: “There are local residents who have expressed great concern about the proposal at the quarry.
“The residents have asked for a public meeting and that will be going ahead as soon as it can be arranged.”
Members of the public can obtain copies of the plans by writing to the county council or Chichester District Council.
Comments on the application need to be made by June 30.
You can do this online at www.westsussex.gov.uk/eplanning orby email to firstname.lastname@example.org. The application reference number is WSCC/029/11/BX.