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Campaigners fight Mackers Metals scrap yard's new plans for recycling centre
CAMPAIGNERS against a scrap metal yard expansion have pledged to continue to fight proposals after fresh plans emerged.
Scrap merchants and car crushers Mackers Metals, in Wrexham Road, Laindon, has submitted a new application to handle recyclable and electrical materials.
Controversial plans were refused by Essex County Council in February last year, amid protests from Basildon Council and a 400- strong petition. Four months ago an appeal against the decision was thrown out.
Now agents have put in new plans which would see the business cease dealing with cars and focus on materials, including metals, cardboard, plastics, hardcore, cans and textiles.
The application states up to 30 lorries a day will travel in and out of the site via Durham Road, equalling 60 movements.
John Scarola, Basildon Labour councillor for Laindon Park, said: “The noise and chaos will be unbelievable.
“There will be 60 lorry movements a day down a residential road which will create all sorts of problems.
“There could be spillage, it backs onto a railway and there could be fires. It would be a danger to pedestrians, motorists and children.”
Since the application first went in, double yellow lines have been painted along Durham Road and Mr Scarola wonders where lorries will wait.
He added: “I am so annoyed about it. This is inappropriate when there’s a nursery and play group opposite.”
The application states waste will be sorted by hand and a small forklift. This means there would be “very limited noise disturbance”
as there will be reduced use of the noisy mechanical grab, used for scrap metal.
It said as the scrap metal and car crushing arm of the business decreases in operation, dealing with other waste materials will increase.
Essex County Councillor for Westley Heights, Ukip’s Kerry Smith, said: “It’s in the wrong place.
“When you get to Durham Road, there’s a width restriction so can you imagine them charging up High Road in Langdon Hills? It would be an accident waiting to happen.
“It’s really unpopular. I have met residents who say they can’t sit in their back gardens in the summer because all they hear is waste being crushed. There is a big problem with noise pollution.”
The application states: “The need for recovery facilities is continually increasing with suitable sites being limited. The applicant is proposing to use its existing premises for the new business which would allow the occupant to diversify.”
Residents can submit their comments on the application on Essex County Council’s website until March 7.
AGENTS for Mackers Metals said the new application offers residents a chance of a better quality of life with less noise.
Mark Stevens, managing director for agents Dovetail, said the offer to cease crushing cars was first mooted to the planning inspectorate when the company took the first refused planning application to appeal.
He added: “Because it didn’t form part of the original application, he had to refuse it. We hope by removing this part of the application it will be approved.
“This application offers a significant benefit to the local community as it will reduce noise. What we are trying to do is in line with the fact the housing isn’t that far away. We are trying to be accommodating even though the scrap yard was there before the houses were.
“If residents object, potentially the existing use will continue so they can make life better for themselves, and to some degree the traffic will be less, because now only one or two cars fit on a lorry, but with scrap you get more on the vehicle.”