Templates

Make your feelings known to the HCC planning department, by once more​​ commenting - deadline is 11th October 2019

The process to object is easy and will only take a short amount of your time. Feel free to use any or all of concerns outlined below but please try not to just copy and paste. An objection in your own words holds far more weight with the authorities.

The consultation is via –​​ 

https://planning.hertfordshire.gov.uk/Planning/Display?applicationNumber=5%2F0394-16

If you need help to access the consultation portal check out our website at

https://ellenbrookresidents.org/2019/09/12/comments-on-quarry-consultation-application-ref-no-5-0394-16/

You can also find other info out on our website re the quarry and other local issues/events

Possible points to use for your objections to the planning application to quarry on Ellenbrook Fields October 2019

I strongly object to the planning application to quarry on Ellenbrook Fields for the following reasons:

Cumulative impact on the area
• This small area of Hertfordshire has already had quarrying for 40 years. This application will extend the quarrying to 72 years. This is a lifetime for most of us and it is unacceptable to concentrate so much quarrying in one small part of the county. I do not believe that the cumulative impact of having three quarry sites in one area (Hatfield) has been fairly assessed as part of the planning process. The cumulative impact of concentrating so much quarrying in one small part of the County must be reconsidered and not ignored as it appears to have been done.

Green Belt & the Country Park
• Ellenbrook Fields was promised to residents as a country park 20 years ago, under a Section 106 agreement. The Country Park Trust must be set up before any planning application is considered to protect this valuable resource.

• The council should not be allowed to renege on this agreement. If this application goes ahead it is unlikely that the Country Park will ever materialise.

• The country park is a unique resource for the residents of Hatfield and is well used by dog walkers, cyclists and especially by runners including the weekly Park Run. There is no alternative to this location in the area if the quarry goes ahead. This location is important for the health and well being of local residents.​​ 

• This quarry will effectively destroy the green belt between Hatfield and St Albans for the next 30+ years.

Pollution & the Bromate Plume – risk to health
• When the ‘resolve to grant’ planning permission was originally agreed in 2016, the bromate plume was barely referred to at the planning meeting. Since then, mainly due to the persistence of local residents, the dangers posed by the bromate plume have been highlighted and the risk to health and the source for the public water supply have become clearer. The proposed quarry site is right next to the bromate plume, which is a known carcinogen. This bromate plume is the largest known contamination in Europe. We strongly object to such a high-risk operation taking place so close to the plume and cannot understand why, by default, this application continues to be pursued by the planning authorities despite the evidence of risk to the source of our water supplies by contamination from the plume.​​ 

• To quarry so close to the plume is an unacceptable risk to our health and environment. The World Health Organisation (WHO) has set a limit of 10 micrograms bromate in one litre of drinking water. This bromate plume next to the quarry exceeds those guidelines by a huge amount

o Known readings within 100 m of the quarry perimeter show levels 9 times greater than the WHO levels

o Known readings within 500 m of the quarry perimeter show readings 56 times greater than the WHO levels
• The Environment Agency have been fully involved in the remediation plan to deal with the bromate plume, yet despite this, after 10 years of remediation work the plume shows little sign of abatement and continues to travel across Hertfordshire. The fact that the spread of the bromate plume appears to not be fully understood by the experts regarding its movement and behaviour is of major concern to us.

• We believe that any land close to the bromate plume should not be disturbed by either quarrying or housing development to reduce the likelihood of the bromate spreading further.​​ 

• The information recently supplied by the applicant is already 6 months out of date. The latest information on the bromate plume (Feb 2019) has been supplied at a time when the water levels are higher due to rain in the Winter months and that information should be supplied after dry periods (such as this Summer) when bromate levels are likely to be worse. We believe that informed decisions should only be made with clear, up to date information.​​ 

• We do not believe that the water management plan (as agreed between the applicants and Herts County Council to manage any issues with the bromate plume) provides sufficient safeguards to deal with the risks of either cross contaminating the upper and lower mineral aquifers or the possible impact on the lateral movement of the plume.​​ 

• We believe that an independent investigation should be carried out by qualified experts in this field to assess the risk of quarrying so close to a bromate plume before any planning applications are considered

Public Water Resources
• We are really concerned that the quarry may have potentially catastrophic effects on the scarce water resource in the aquifer under the proposed dig site, used as the source for our public water supplies and do not believe that any risk to the water source should be taken. Two pumping stations have already been affected, one in Hatfield had to be closed due to the bromate plume and one in Essendon is closely monitored and regularly switched off or has to have mitigation to bring it below the WHO levels, we do not believe that any risks to the remaining supplies in the area should be taken.

Access to the site/ Safety and Traffic congestion
• We believe that the risk posed to highway safety at the entrance to the quarry site (by Notcutts) is high; this site will have 174 HGV movements a day onto a single carriage road. To access the site HGVs will need to have a turning lane on the A1057 into the access road as all traffic must enter coming from the East. This is a busy road and slow HGVs queuing in this lane will cause the traffic to back up, it will only take two or three lorries waiting to completely block the road. Recent road works in the last few weeks have proved this theory, causing traffic in the morning at the Smallford roundabout to be queued back to beyond the Ellenbrook roundabout. Station road down to the bridge and Oaklands Lane up to the roundabouts at Jersey Farm.

•​​ The vehicles waiting to turn across traffic onto the site vis proposed access will be prevented from doing so by traffic coming from St Albans towards the Galleria and the A1. This will be aggravated by HGVs slowly pulling out of and away from the site onto the A1057 slowing the eastbound traffic.

• We do not accept the Highways view that it should be safe if all the ancient trees and hedgerow are removed and clear vision granted. This will forever change the rural appearance of this street and area into a commercial zone.


Other Alternatives
• It is unclear to us as residents why Hertfordshire County Council is so keen to go ahead with such a high risk venture when there are other viable alternatives elsewhere in the county with lower risk and potentially higher yields and the quarry application at Bengeo was dismissed due to possible contamination, which was less of a risk than this application.

• Due to the high risk associated with the bromate plume which may cause gravel extraction to pause or stop, this site will not guarantee the supply of the expected amount of sand and gravel.​​ 
If certain conditions such as water levels alter or the bromate plume contaminates the aquifer all digging must stop. This is a credible reality not just scare mongering.

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………...…………………………………...

N.B.

If the consultation portal fails to accept your comments you can email them direct to

spatial.planning@environment.hertfordshire.gov.uk

……...……………………………………………………...…………...…………………...……………………………………………………….

 



Hi All,

I'm sure, as we are, you are fed up with this quarry application and the authorities continued persistence with it and you might think their attempts to wear us down. We believe this will be the last consultation they run, i.e. the last opportunity for us all to let them know how we feel. (The application according to the planning officer is now expected to be heard at Hertford Council Chamber, 31st October 2019 at 10am, we will let you know as soon as it is confirmed, please try and attend as numbers attending really can help to persuade the planning committee that they should listen.)

Please do not give up, the authorities would love that. 

Make your feelings known to the HCC planning department, by once more​​ commenting - deadline is 11th October 2019

The process to object is easy and will only take a short amount of your time. Feel free to use any or all of concerns outlined below but please try not to just copy and paste. An objection in your own words holds far more weight with the authorities.

The consultation is via –​​ 

https://planning.hertfordshire.gov.uk/Planning/Display?applicationNumber=5%2F0394-16

If you need help to access the consultation portal check out our website at

https://ellenbrookresidents.org/2019/09/12/comments-on-quarry-consultation-application-ref-no-5-0394-16/

You can also find other info out on our website re the quarry and other local issues/events

Possible points to use for your objections to the planning application to quarry on Ellenbrook Fields October 2019

I strongly object to the planning application to quarry on Ellenbrook Fields for the following reasons:

Cumulative impact on the area
• This small area of Hertfordshire has already had quarrying for 40 years. This application will extend the quarrying to 72 years. This is a lifetime for most of us and it is unacceptable to concentrate so much quarrying in one small part of the county. I do not believe that the cumulative impact of having three quarry sites in one area (Hatfield) has been fairly assessed as part of the planning process. The cumulative impact of concentrating so much quarrying in one small part of the County must be reconsidered and not ignored as it appears to have been done.

Green Belt & the Country Park
• Ellenbrook Fields was promised to residents as a country park 20 years ago, under a Section 106 agreement. The Country Park Trust must be set up before any planning application is considered to protect this valuable resource.

• The council should not be allowed to renege on this agreement. If this application goes ahead it is unlikely that the Country Park will ever materialise.

• The country park is a unique resource for the residents of Hatfield and is well used by dog walkers, cyclists and especially by runners including the weekly Park Run. There is no alternative to this location in the area if the quarry goes ahead. This location is important for the health and well being of local residents.​​ 

• This quarry will effectively destroy the green belt between Hatfield and St Albans for the next 30+ years.

Pollution & the Bromate Plume – risk to health
• When the ‘resolve to grant’ planning permission was originally agreed in 2016, the bromate plume was barely referred to at the planning meeting. Since then, mainly due to the persistence of local residents, the dangers posed by the bromate plume have been highlighted and the risk to health and the source for the public water supply have become clearer. The proposed quarry site is right next to the bromate plume, which is a known carcinogen. This bromate plume is the​​ 
largest known contamination in Europe. We strongly object to such a high-risk operation taking place so close to the plume and cannot understand why, by default, this application continues to be pursued by the planning authorities despite the evidence of risk to the source of our water supplies by contamination from the plume.​​ 
• To quarry so close to the plume is an unacceptable risk to our health and environment. The World Health Organisation (WHO) has set a limit of 10 micrograms bromate in one litre of drinking water. This bromate plume next to the quarry exceeds those guidelines by a huge amount

o Known readings within 100 m of the quarry perimeter show levels 9 times greater than the WHO levels

o Known readings within 500 m of the quarry perimeter show readings 56 times greater than the WHO levels

• The Environment Agency have been fully involved in the remediation plan to deal with the bromate plume, yet despite this, after 10 years of remediation work the plume shows little sign of abatement and continues to travel across Hertfordshire. The fact that the spread of the bromate plume appears to not be fully understood by the experts regarding its movement and behaviour is of major concern to us.

• We believe that any land close to the bromate plume should not be disturbed by either quarrying or housing development to reduce the likelihood of the bromate spreading further.​​ 

• The information recently supplied by the applicant is already 6 months out of date. The latest information on the bromate plume (Feb 2019) has been supplied at a time when the water levels are higher due to rain in the Winter months and that information should be supplied after dry periods (such as this Summer) when bromate levels are likely to be worse. We believe that informed decisions should only be made with clear, up to date information.​​ 

• We do not believe that the water management plan (as agreed between the applicants and Herts County Council to manage any issues with the bromate plume) provides sufficient safeguards to deal with the risks of either cross contaminating the upper and lower mineral aquifers or the possible impact on the lateral movement of the plume.​​ 

• We believe that an independent investigation should be carried out by qualified experts in this field to assess the risk of quarrying so close to a bromate plume before any planning applications are considered

Public Water Resources
• We are really concerned that the quarry may have potentially catastrophic effects on the scarce water resource in the aquifer under the proposed dig site, used as the source for our public water supplies and do not believe that any risk to the water source should be taken. Two pumping stations have already been affected, one in Hatfield had to be closed due to the bromate plume and one in Essendon is closely monitored and regularly switched off or has to have mitigation to bring it below the WHO levels, we do not believe that any risks to the remaining supplies in the area should be taken.

Access to the site/ Safety and Traffic congestion
• We believe that the risk posed to highway safety at the entrance to the quarry site (by Notcutts) is high; this site will have 174 HGV movements a day onto a single carriage road. To access the site HGVs will need to have a turning lane on the A1057 into the access road as all traffic must enter coming from the East. This is a busy road and slow HGVs queuing in this lane will cause the traffic to back up, it will only take two or three lorries waiting to completely block the road. Recent road works in the last few weeks have proved this theory, causing traffic in the morning at the Smallford roundabout to be queued back to beyond the Ellenbrook roundabout. Station road down to the bridge and Oaklands Lane up to the roundabouts at Jersey Farm.

•​​ The vehicles waiting to turn across traffic onto the site vis proposed access will be prevented from doing so by traffic coming from St Albans towards the Galleria and the A1. This will be aggravated by HGVs slowly pulling out of and away from the site onto the A1057 slowing the eastbound traffic.

• We do not accept the Highways view that it should be safe if all the ancient trees and hedgerow are removed and clear vision granted. This will forever change the rural appearance of this street and area into a commercial zone.


Other Alternatives
• It is unclear to us as residents why Hertfordshire County Council is so keen to go ahead with such a high risk venture when there are other viable alternatives elsewhere in the county with lower risk and potentially higher yields and the quarry application at Bengeo was dismissed due to possible contamination, which was less of a risk than this application.

• Due to the high risk associated with the bromate plume which may cause gravel extraction to pause or stop, this site will not guarantee the supply of the expected amount of sand and gravel. If certain conditions such as water levels alter or the bromate plume contaminates the aquifer all digging must stop. This is a credible reality not just scare mongering.

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………...…………………………………...

N.B.

If the consultation portal fails to accept your comments you can email them direct to

spatial.planning@environment.hertfordshire.gov.uk

……...……………………………………………………...…………...…………………...……………………………………………………….

Once more our thanks in helping us to try and preserve this area and maintain a healthy environment for us, our children, and in my case grandchildren.

Regards

John