Consultation on Preferred Options

An open meeting about the proposed mineral extraction was facilitated by the Parish Council on 5th January attended by more than 70 parishioners.

It is stressed it is in everyone’s interests to register their comments on the Consultation proposals – which is effectively whether you support or oppose the council’s policy objectives.  The deadline is 5 p.m. on 15th January 2016. There is a proforma which can be completed on-line or downloaded and posted in to NYCC, although we are advised verbally that anyone can also write in or use the free text ‘additional comments’ at the bottom of the form but that all communication must bear the MJP43 reference and must be submitted before the closing date to be considered. Preferably, comments will be supported by Chapter, page and policy numbers in order to ensure that they are considered. to obtain your copy and read the whole documents.

The open meeting concluded that the best interests of the village will be served by the exclusion of lands to the west of Ham Hall Lane and east of Low Street for three very strong reasons.

Firstly, we are not convinced that NYCC has fully estimated the productive yield of high quality sand and gravels. An independent survey which the Parish Council has funded reveals a high degree of low-level clayey sands which cannot be extracted easily or be financially viable. Therefore we have concluded that the economic case to extract is weak. At the same time, there is an economic disadvantage to householders in the village whose property values and saleability may be ‘blighted’ by the inclusion of Scruton fields in the preferred options.

Secondly, there is a public safety risk caused by pollution from additional traffic dust and noise and the risk to low-flying aircraft. Scruton is so very close to the Airfield Safeguarding Zone, and none of us can have forgotten the terrible tragedy and loss of life at Shoreham when an aeroplane came down on a busy road.

Thirdly, we are concerned that, if MJP43 lands remain included, there appears to be a suggestion that permission to extract will not occur before 2025, contributing to the economic blight on property and the prolonged period of disruption for villagers.

The Parish Council will be submitting a composite response taking into account the concerns expressed by villagers and we will keep you advised of any news as we hear it. But meanwhile we must stress the value of as many people as possible sending in their concerns and opinions on proposals to have maximum impact.

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