Thursday, May 26, 2011
Meeting with Gilberdyke Tip Operators
Although the meeting went quite well, everyone was civil to each other, and many questions were answered, but I certainly felt that a number of unanswered questions remain and there are series issues that need to be addressed. I was reassured that the Environment Agency who monitor the site has visited the site each week in the past six weeks, but what was clear from the beginning is there had been almost no communication from the tip’s new owners and the community, and for me this had led to the tensions. I hope the putting forward of views and the answers given will in some way reduce these tensions.
I am still at a loss as to why a company applying to extend the life of a tip would put the residents through so much suffering in the lead up to the application being heard. It was not made clear as to why we had seen the vast increase in HGV movements to and from the site, and why many of the HGV movements appear to be by trucks originating in the North East of the Country.
From the information given by the representatives from the tip it would appear that the original owners have made the application to extend the life of the tip, this being ‘City Plant’ which operated as a sole trader. A recent change has taken place with the operators now being a limited company trading as ‘City Plant Limited’ which corresponded with a cash injection into the business. However, the identity of the directors of this new company was withheld. What is clear is that Mr Kevin Wanlass confirmed that he is employed by North East based waste company Niramax and is acting as a consultant to the new operators of the site.
Gilberdyke Parish Councillor John Jessop adds, “It was confirmed that the injection of new finance with the aim of utilising all the available space left in the site, will result in a very significant number of lorry movements over and above those estimated in the City Plant planning application to extend the life of the tip”.
“Complaints from residents about the offensive stench were virtually ignored and claims by the company and the Environment Agency that any smells were ‘Agricultural in source’ were made. Unfortunately many of the group of residents were of farming stock and the claim completely rejected. The stench (the company describe it as an odour) had become particularly bad over recent weeks, an explanation was offered but there was a degree of scepticism from the residents and Parish Councillors.
Concerns were also raised regarding the discharge of foul, black liquid into the dyke alongside the tip, this was denied and at one point the EA officer tried to suggest that the resulting elevated level of liquid in the dyke was due to the tide – The dyke is not tidal, it has tidal doors at the River Ouse end and the River Foulness at the other end is not tidal! Photographic evidence of pollution of the dyke as far as Gilberdyke Medical Centre was produced. Unfortunately no answer could be given that was acceptable to the residents and Parish Councillors.
A promise was given that the life of the tip would not be extended again if this extension were to be granted - can we really believe this or to paraphrase Mandy Rice Davies of Profumo case fame many years ago "Well they would say that wouldn't they?"