Welbeck Landfill Site could carry on for another five years

PROPOSAL: Welbeck Tip could have its licence extended.
PROPOSAL: Welbeck Tip could have its licence extended.

A waste site that was supposed to be turned into a nature reserve could carry on dealing with rubbish for another five years.

Welbeck Landfill Site’s licence expired in May but an application from management company FCC will now be considered by Wakefield Council to extend the scheme until the end of 2023.

As residents we’re all left with the dust and the dirt. It’s a shambles and a disgrace.

Paul Dainton

Under the proposals there would then be a further two years to turn the site back to rural land as was decided when the tip was first approved.

Paul Dainton, president of campaign group Residents Against Toxic Scheme (RATS), said: “We argued 20 years ago, and 10 years ago, that this would carry on forever and they insisted it wouldn’t. As it is now it’s simply nowhere near finished and there’s no way they can complete the original scheme in the next eight years. As residents we’re all left with the dust and the dirt. It’s a shambles and a disgrace.”

He said the council had little option but to extend the licence to make sure the restoration work was completed. A report by planning officers recommended the application be approved, saying it was “not possible” to complete the project by May this year.

They said the proposed changes to the licence would have minimal effect on the landscape and any noticeable changes would be “positive and beneficial”.

They added: “The Planning and Highways Committee do not have any interests, legal, financial, or operational in the site.” On its website FCC said the restoration would be “a significant improvement to the local area and provide a valuable asset for the community.”

A decision will be made on Thursday, September 6.