Holme BioEnergy’s bid for expansion rejected

The plans were unanimously rejected in a meeting of the planning committee at County Hall yesterday (Thursday, March 28).
The plans were unanimously rejected in a meeting of the planning committee at County Hall yesterday (Thursday, March 28).

Expansion plans for a “waste factory” in Holme on Spalding Moor have been thrown out by councillors after fears increased site traffic could be a danger to residents.

Holme BioEnergy Ltd had proposed to increase the amount of waste processed at its anaerobic digestion (AD) plant from 30,000 to 80,000 tonnes per year.

Permission was also sought to allow liquid waste to be used as a “feedstock” – alongside poultry manure, straw and water which was already approved at the Park Farm site.

East Riding Council received a total of 244 objection letters, with many listing concerns about a potential increase in noise, smell and traffic in the village.

The application was unanimously refused by the council’s planning committee on the grounds that an extra 5,000 lorries per year would be unsuitable for an “already dangerous” local road network.

Councillors were told that three serious accidents had occurred on the nearby A164 in the last month, with the road twice being closed for up to eight hours.

Holme on Spalding Moor Parish Council strongly opposed the latest application, stating that the village is already ringed by waste disposal sites. It described the latest plans as “a bridge too far”.

A previously approved application for the site currently restricts feedstock to poultry manure, straw and water, while the new application centred on allowing liquid food waste to be delivered by tankers.

There were 44 letters in support of the application, claiming it would create jobs, support local businesses and benefit the environment in the long term.

An agent on behalf of Holme BioEnergy Ltd said the application was only to address a change in foodstock, rather than capacity.

She added that AD plants are an important part of government policy and represent the most sustainable way to deal with this type of waste.

The company also proposed a £20,000 annual fund for the local community as part of its application.

One councillor called for consistently when making a decision on the AD plant, saying that the latest proposals fail to represent a significant change from previous submissions made by the company.

He said: “I think we should stick to our guns on this, we’ve refused similar applications twice already, this is the third time of asking for almost the exact same thing and I propose that we refuse on the same grounds as we did last time.”

The plans were unanimously rejected in a meeting of the planning committee at County Hall in Beverley yesterday (Thursday 28 March).