The Dewsbury plant currently serves projects in the area. Credit: Newlay

Controversial asphalt plant returns to committee

A project refused planning permission in August 2023 is now recommended for approval in the face of stiff local opposition.

The proposal by Newlay Asphalt is to construct an asphalt plant and associated works on land south of Catfoss Pig Farm, Brandesburton.

At around 15,600 sq ft it would be slightly smaller than the current structures on site.

Refused on grounds of visual amenity and impact on the countryside last year (its second rejection by ERoY), the applicant, which is advised by Pegasus, has taken the matter to appeal.

While that application is still to be validated, Newlay has amended its plans in a bid to overcome local concerns – and although planning officers now recommend the project for approval, opposition remains fervent.

Parish councils representing Brandesburton, North Frodingham, Bewholme and Tickton & Routh are all opposed.

Brandesburton Parish Council said: “By the applicant’s own admission this is an almost identical application to that refused in August 2023.

“The minimal changes made in no way address the concerns raised previously by the parish council and the hundreds who objected in the community. It also patently fails to address the reasons for refusal by ERYC last time around.”

In addition to the parish councils, 344 letters of objection have been submitted.

The main change suggested by the applicant is that the height of the stack on site would be reduced by 25%, or 5 metres. Some reconfiguration is also suggested, along with additional landscaping to the western boundary.

The site is not allocated for development, so is classed as countryside, although East Riding’s Local Plan has not yet been adopted in any case. However, in broad terms the plan does support brownfield development of a suitable scale that contributes to the local economy, enough for officers to back the plan.

Weighing in the project’s favour is reducing the road miles required to support local construction and infrastructure projects – a key supplier in the area, it currently delivers from its Dewsbury plant – while in visual impact terms, it is pointed out the plant would be 220m from the main A road.

In conclusion, officers said that many of the matters raised by objectors “predominantly do not constitute material planning considerations and therefore cannot be given any weight in the planning balance – the Council is required to assess each application on its own merits, and whilst the recent history of this proposal is acknowledged including the two previously refused applications, this is not sufficient reason alone to warrant refusal of the application due to the material differences in the development for which permission is now sought.”

Officers continue: “The proposal would represent a sustainable form of development through its appropriate siting within an established parcel of the existing Catfoss Industrial Estate, and also through its proposed purpose to serve the key employment sector of construction in the East Riding through the provision of a source of locally produced asphalt for use in road surfacing and other construction works in the vicinity.”

Full documentation relating to the project can be viewed on East Riding of Yorkshire Council’s planning portal with the reference 23/03473/CM. The planning committee meets on 28 March.

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